Advice on school entrance exams - what is usual procedure?

(17 Posts)
Bambambini Wed 25-May-16 19:15:52

Thinking of moving to Europe and have a school we are very interested in. We went out to have a look and had an interview with the head. They hold entrance assessments but we need to go to sit them and it will mean taking the kids out of school here. I asked if we could sit them in the UK with an independent invigilator but no. I also asked if we could have any old exams just so we know what we are dealing with - again no. I'm not keen of taking the kids out of school to make a special trip just to sit an exam that we have no clue what kind of things they will be asking.

Any advice would be appreciated , thanks.

lifeisunjust Wed 25-May-16 20:27:58

Without naming the school, not sure what advice anyone could give you.

Or at least the country......
Or is it an international school? what curriculum and
grades?

LIZS Fri 27-May-16 06:20:17

There is no usual procedure. If you want a particular school you have to be prepared to work with them from the start. Some will be flexible , others won't . It also depends on age of children and nature of the test. If there is a linguistic requirement they may well want to assess in situ.

Bambambini Fri 27-May-16 07:35:45

Thanks. It's a british school in spain. Just wondered if others who had moved countries and schools had to go through the same. Making a journey for the kids just to be assessed. I know they are strict on sufficient ebglish but we had a long interview with the head who spoke with the kids. Was wondering if i should speak direct with the head.

MissTeriName Fri 27-May-16 07:48:21

If you particularly want that school, you will have to go to sit the exam.

British Schools are often in high demand, so they can pick and choose who they accept.

The exam will probably test your kids English and maths ability. Depending on their age, they may test more subjects to see what year group they would go in. Some schools are more flexible with age vs ability and may put them up or down a year as required.

Bambambini Fri 27-May-16 08:24:55

They are running under capacity. Head told me at Easter and the admissions person said they still have space. Looking at another school as back up. I just wondered if this was the norm and other folk had made a trip in school time just to sit an assessmen. And, if schools could be more flexible as in letting the kids sit an assessment in the UK, reports from teachers etc.

ShanghaiDiva Fri 27-May-16 08:29:54

My ds took the assessment in the UK for his new school in China. I would find it strange to make a separate trip for kids to be assessed, particularly as the head has already spoken to your children. I would speak to the head to see if other arrangements can be made.

CQ Fri 27-May-16 08:31:05

Seems very inflexible of the school. We applied from overseas for schools here, both schools sent the papers to our school and they sat the tests in the headmaster's meeting room under exam conditions, the papers were sealed and fed-exed back to the UK. Schools were satisfied and no extra expense of unnecessary flights.

No past papers to practice on though, same as you OP - school both said they wanted to see what the children were capable of without prepping.
That bit makes sense.

I remember at another overseas school we went to, my DCs just sat tests when we arrived in-country. It was more of an assessment to check which class to put them in really.

If they are running under capacity might there be some negotiation to be had here, on the grounds of reasonableness?

marcopront Sat 28-May-16 09:13:30

I teach in an International school and we have quite a lot of people who do the entrance exams in their current schools and the papers are then scanned and emailed back to us. There is sometimes confusion as they don't follow instructions about where to write answers and I don't know if calculators have been allowed or not. They will then have a Skype interview as well.

marcopront Sat 28-May-16 09:13:55

I teach in an International school and we have quite a lot of people who do the entrance exams in their current schools and the papers are then scanned and emailed back to us. There is sometimes confusion as they don't follow instructions about where to write answers and I don't know if calculators have been allowed or not. They will then have a Skype interview as well.

marcopront Sat 28-May-16 09:14:22

Sorry for duplicate post.

Bambambini Sat 28-May-16 10:36:20

Thanks folks. That's what i wanted to check before i approach them again, that it's not unusual to sit assessments in your home country to avoid a trip and cost - plus having to take kids out of school. Admmissions person i just sending abrupt reply. Might go straight to the head.

booklooker Sun 29-May-16 08:22:38

Are you sure it is an entrance exam? It may be just a paper to determine where your dc will be placed in subjects like maths and english that may be setted. This is what my school does.

We also give the same paper for maths each year, so there are no past papers to look at.

Bambambini Sun 29-May-16 11:36:44

It might be more on the libes of an assessment. Though they did say that there are still spaces because candidates have failed.

dolkapots Sat 04-Jun-16 17:35:53

We came across both CAT testing (computerised, mostly non verbal reasoning which you can't really revise for) and an ordinary end-of-year style exam. Never had any in Spain though. The last one the Head was very positive and seemed like she was offering a place on the spot, but just wanted dd to sit a test "to see what stream she would be in" however I enquired recently and they are testing applicants up until 30th June so it is unlikely we have got a place.

As a PP said they can afford to be picky as there is a high demand. I would go over maths in particular and depending on the age of dc try the Bond 11+ non verbal reasoning book.

user1474385756 Tue 20-Sep-16 16:44:08

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

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