Tiffin Schools Admission Arrangements

(663 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

tiffinboys Fri 27-Apr-12 00:56:58

Tiffin Schools (Boys & Girls) have issued their Determined Admission Arrangements for 2013-14. Boths Schools have decided to ignore pleas from the local community and opted to continue with Open Selection.

Though most of the grammar schools have catchment/proximity rules, some even going to the extent of denying applications to sit for their entrance test in breach of Grenwich ruling, Tiffins would continue open selection policies. Only handful of children from Kingston & surrounding areas get places in Tiffins. Most of the places go to the children living at very very far away places, eg. Harrow, Southall, Greenford.

Grammar schools from Bromley (St. Olave & Newstead Wood), Redbridge (Woodford County & Ilford County) or Barnet/Herts (DAO & Latymer) or Slough (Langley) would not allow out-of-catchment children to even apply for admission tests. Other schools like Kent grammars would only give places to children living near to the School. Some schools have most of the places for catchment area (Nonsuch, Wallington etc.).

This year, Reading grammars (Kendrik & Reading) and Chelmsford grammars (both boys & girls) have changed their over-subscription criteria from 100% open selection to 100% catchment and 80% catchment respectively.

It is high time that children from Kingston and surrounding areas also get level playing field. Until all grammar schools are 100% open selection, it is fair that some priority is restored for these children.

We have therefore proposed that Tiffins give 80% places on the basis of proximity to the Schools (or such other Centre point in the Borough, as previously proposed by the LA) to those children who pass the entrance tests. Other 20% may be given on open selection.

This proposal complies with Greenwich/Rotherham rulings. We are aware that it would take lot of persuation for the Governors of these school to accept this proposal. We call upon all parents from Kingston & Surrounding areas t write to the Tiffin Schools in support of this proposal and copy these to your local MPs and Councillors.

MrsCornish Fri 27-Apr-12 01:32:10

Why, as long as children aren't travelling for too long, does it matter where they live?

Panamfan Fri 27-Apr-12 09:40:55

QE boys and Henrietta Barnett are by merit only and fair enough I say. It takes a hell of a lot of work to get into these schools(even if children are being tutored), so fair play to anyone who gets into these schools purely by merit.
Really don't see why Tiffin should change. If your child isn't smart enough or doesn't want to put in the work to get into Tiffin, then choose another school.

prh47bridge Fri 27-Apr-12 11:41:40

I have not checked all the schools you name but those I have checked are not breaking the Greenwich ruling. They have a catchment area which, for the ones I have looked at, does not coincide with the local authority boundary. They test everyone inside the catchment area. They only test children outside the catchment area if places cannot be filled by children living within the catchment area. It therefore isn't the case that they "would not allow out of catchment children to even apply for admission tests". They simply don't subject children to the admission test when there is no chance of them getting a place. All of that is perfectly legal.

Yellowtip Fri 27-Apr-12 12:04:08

tiffinboys since we don't have a universal grammar system in place, it's far fairer to select on merit than on postcode. What you are suggesting introduces an element of inequity into the process and that can't be good.

legallady Fri 27-Apr-12 12:57:01

I think what tiffinboys is saying is that as many other areas have stuck at catchment only or are reverting to that this year, those who live in the vicinity of the Tiffin schools are put at a significant disadvantage. For example, children who live within catchment of the Slough grammars can still apply for the Tiffin schools whereas Kingston children cannot do the same and apply for the Slough grammars.

Obviously views on this will differ greatly depending on where you live wink

prh47bridge Fri 27-Apr-12 13:26:12

Just to be clear, Kingston children CAN apply for the Slough grammar schools. They just have very little chance of getting a place whereas Slough children applying to Tiffin schools have a reasonable chance of getting in.

CecilyP Fri 27-Apr-12 14:05:51

Really don't see why Tiffin should change. If your child isn't smart enough or doesn't want to put in the work to get into Tiffin, then choose another school.

Easy-peasy then. The real problem is the lack of non-selective provision in the north of Kingston. If your child isn't 'smart enough' you will be living too far away from other popular Kingston schools to get a place. Neighbouring Richmond, where your nearest non-selective will be located, operates a system of feeder primaries, so if your child doesn't attend one of those, choices will be very limited.

playgroup Fri 27-Apr-12 14:10:34

Richmond upon Thames is moving to home to school distance for all secondary schools for 2013 entry
except waldegrave which has some weird boundary thing

BeingFluffy Fri 27-Apr-12 15:20:51

I have a child at one of the Tiffin Schools and we don't live in the local area. I am in favour of open selection. Frankly most of my child's friends at the school are local to the Kingston and New Malden area. I have seen this argument being aired on another forum and local residents seem to be pretty apathetic about changing anything unless their kids don't get in and they start bleating on about how unfair the whole thing is! One of my other children didn't get in because others simply did better in the exam - we were disappointed but got over it, we didn't try and change the rules to give sibling priority!

I live in an area where 5 out of 6 local secondaries base their intake on various religious beliefs - I don't particularly like it, but accept that they have the right to select in that way and to change the admissions processes would be to fundamentally change the character of some excellent schools.

To try and skew the intake in favour of local residents in Kingston would just lead to people buying or renting in the catchment area - it would not be fairer at all. It would also weaken the schools as beacons of academic excellence. If you want more school places lobby in favour of the new school that was supposed to be being built next door to Tiffin Girls' not try and destroy the existing schools.

tiffinboys Fri 27-Apr-12 15:44:42

Good debate; but if you read all of my post, you would have agreed with me.

I proposed that Until All Grammar Schools Adopt Open Selection, Tiffins should also bring in catchment/proximity rules.

Why Kingston should bear all the load from as far away as Slough/Harrow, when the other grammars (Langley, DAO, Latymer, Watford etc. etc) have catchment/proximity rules and Kingston & surrounding areas children cannot even appear at their entrance tests.

So may be we should all lobby government to make all grammars Open Selective. Until then, it is fair that our children gets same privilleges as children of Langley, Barnet, Chelmsford, Reading, Kent, Buckinghamshire etc. etc. are getting.

BeingFluffy Fri 27-Apr-12 16:03:09

Henrietta Barnett (Barnet) has open selection, I don't know the other schools. Therefore it is simply not true that all other grammars have catchment areas. Where are you going to draw the boundary? - Tiffin Girls is just over the border from Richmond - what about the girls from there or New Malden? Are you really a local property owner trying to up the prices in the local area, because that will be the biggest effect!

Tiffin Girls is now an academy, wants to keep open selection, and as a Tiffin parent who is very happy with the school, I would like to keep it the way it is. I am not going to go round trying to destroy my local church schools because my children can't get into them and by analogy I don't see why you think you have the right to utterly change the intake and ethos of the Tiffin Schools.

Our Kent grammar has open selection- lots of children travel down from other areas. They only use distance if there is a tie on score. There are 2 other schools here the same. Chelmsford and Cheltenham the same too I believe.

CecilyP Fri 27-Apr-12 16:33:34

playgroup, the change in Richmond admissions will be good news for residents of north Kingston.

tiffinboys, while some of the other schools you have listed have catchments, many of those catchments are huge. For example, Latymer's catchment takes in a very wide area of north and east London covering several inner and outer boroughs. Likewise, the girls schools in Sutton. How would you propose the catchment of Tiffins? On a radial basis, if you make it large enough to reach the south of Chessington, the catchments will also take in children from Richmond, Hounslow, Merton, Ealing, Wandsworth, Hammersmith and Fulham and Surrey - so in terms of numbers would only make a difference regarding a few children.

tiffinboys Fri 27-Apr-12 16:39:02

Again some people are responding without reading the original post.

I have not proposed any catchment area. I have proposed that place be allocated to those children who achieve minimum standard i.e. not every one and then, on the basis of proximity to school.

It is not necessary that those who live nearby would achieve minimum standard. So it is more likely that the based on the minimum standard (to be fixed by the school - say 220), children from as far as 5 to 7 miles from the school would get admission. Current cut-off for Boys is 229 (last year 228), so 220 is not much lower and the Schools standard would not be effected an inch.

Only children coming from over long distance, say from Hharrow or Greenwich, will be effected and it is in their interest that they take up place in their nearby school. We are aware from other threads that parents have declined admissions in other grammar schools (such as Langley) and taken place in Tiffins.

Other point, I always mentioned Kingston & surrounding areas, obviously this mean whole of Kingston borough (from Chessington to Richmond Park), and all adjoining areas such as part of Richmond/Twicenham/Esher/Wimbledon/Worcester Park.

Hope this clears some of the mis-understanding.

No another poster, no I don't live in or any where near North Kingston ( if that what you think Kingston is).

CecilyP Fri 27-Apr-12 16:54:19

I see. Wouldn't the heads of the schools just insist that minimum standard is the mark achieved by the top 150 pupils? Incidentally, if you allocate on proximity to the school, children living in the boroughs listed in my previous post, will still have a better chance of getting in than children from the Chessington area of Kingston.

SardineQueen Fri 27-Apr-12 16:56:47

But there are schools in Barnet for a start that have places allocated purely on the exams.

Children travel for miles to attend these schools.

Your idea that there is something unusual with the admissions criteria for the school you are talking about is incorrect.

SardineQueen Fri 27-Apr-12 16:58:56

What you are suggesting is that in order to get into the schools people will probably need to

a. have a very bright child
b. tutor them for the exams
AND
c. be wealthy enough to buy or rent a property near to the school

That sounds like a terrible idea.

tiffinboys Fri 27-Apr-12 17:05:57

@ CecilyP; Children from Chesington would have far better chance in my proposal than at present. Chessington is far nearer than Harrow or Slough.

@SardineQueen: In whole of greater London, there are handful of school on open selection. In Barnet, DAO and Latymer would not allow out of catchment to even appear for their entrance test. Another excellent school Parmiters is also there. I know QE is open selection.

In Kingston, we have only 1 grammar school for boys and 1 for girls and both are quite small. In Kent (proximity rules), there are 31 grammars. Another cluster of grammars is in Buckinghamshire. Again they have proximity rules.

If most of the grammars have catchment or proximity criteria, my thinking must have some merit.

corlan Fri 27-Apr-12 17:07:10

Only handful of children from Kingston & surrounding areas get places in Tiffins. Most of the places go to the children living at very very far away places, eg. Harrow, Southall, Greenford

Got anything to back that up?

tiffinboys Fri 27-Apr-12 17:08:47

@SardineQueen: Don't tutor them. DIY them. And like me, you don't have to live next to Tiffins.

tiffinboys Fri 27-Apr-12 17:11:38

@corlan; yes and to confirm we have made FOI request to both the Tiffin Schools.

SoupDragon Fri 27-Apr-12 17:14:54

The only time distance comes into allocating places at Wilsons (in Wallington) is when they allocate the final places where a number of boys have the same score in the entrance exam. The same is true for Wallington County Grammar and Sutton Grammar. Other that that it is the boy's rank in the test - i.e. ability, pure and simple.

breadandbutterfly Fri 27-Apr-12 17:25:35

Why don't you just move to Kent or Bucks/ Isn't that easier than changing the whole school to suit you? judging by the threads on here, the Tiffins seem to be v popular schools - presumably the parents like them as they are?

tiffinboys Fri 27-Apr-12 17:29:00

Which parents - the one from Timbuctoo or the ones from Kingston and Surrounding areas?

Why do over 90% of the grammars have catchment or proximity rules? As I said, if all are open selective, then its fine for Tiffins to be open selective.

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