"Gifted and Talented" - could somone please explain this to me as I'm really not getting it and feel quite cross and I'm not a pushy mum, at all!!

(77 Posts)
sandyballs Thu 31-Jan-13 12:14:45

Honestly I'm not. But please explain how a child who absolutely hates PE and any form of exercise can be identified as "Gifted and Talented" in PE, yet a child who has represented the school in cross country, athletics, basketball and netball, done very well indeed in all of them, and was picked for the teams through trials, yet is not identified as "Gifted and Talented" for PE.

Am I missing something?

sandyballs Thu 31-Jan-13 12:22:49

Bump

JustGiveMeFiveMinutes Thu 31-Jan-13 12:37:52

That sounds incredibly unfair but it doesn't surprise me at all. I don't know how teachers come to the decisions they do sometimes. Tell your dc not to worry and to carry on doing their best.

lougle Thu 31-Jan-13 12:38:39

Which child is yours? grin

Any child that competes at county level should be identified as talented.

Can't remember where the gifted comes from

seeker Thu 31-Jan-13 12:40:42

Sounds odd- but make sure you've got your facts straight. Did you hear this from your child- or from a (forgive me) reliable source?

sandyballs Thu 31-Jan-13 13:22:04

The G&T letters were given out yesterday. I wasn't expecting either of my girls to get one. One of them did in a couple of subjects, great well done her, and DH were pleased, so was she. My other DD didn't. I thought nothing of it until I had an email from a friend this morning saying her son got G&T in a couple of subjects, including PE. She is the first to admit how odd this is as he has always hated exercise and has never joined any teams or done anthing other than reluctantly joining in the standard compulsory PE classes at school.

DD2 is very sporty, she has lots of trophies and medals for sport over the years, and represented the school at primary and secondary for all sorts as I said above, it's just 'her thing' However I didn't expect her to be G&T at sport, last night I just assumed that although she's good there were other kids that were better than her, fair enough, they would deserve to be identified as G&T.

But that's obviously not the case if this lad as been identified as G&T in PE

I'm going to have to risk sounding like a super pushy parent and speak to school aren't I. I know how it will come across but I'm just amazed!

Makes the whole G&T process seem like a load of bollocks to me and sadly takes the shine of DD1's achievements!

JustGiveMeFiveMinutes Thu 31-Jan-13 13:27:24

I don't think you're being unreasonable at all too think it's unfair.

JustGiveMeFiveMinutes Thu 31-Jan-13 13:27:46

'to'

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

fubbsy Thu 31-Jan-13 13:34:49

The school should be able to explain the criteria they use. They should also be able to say what extra provision they are offering for the kids who have been identified. If they can't do these things, then it is a load of bollocks IMO.

Theas18 Thu 31-Jan-13 13:41:56

I think it's all tosh TBH. Large number of G+T are being " identified" (something like the top 10% in primary). To me that's no G+T it's the upper end of a statistically normal curve. Lets face it, the bottom 10% (unless they are really a long way from the mean) are not statemented and given loads of extra help.Same for real G+T I think.

Fortunately or unfortunately I don't make the rules!

Sounds like the school are making up their own G&T criteria based on achievement and encouragement or something. Is it a competetive school? Perhaps they just need to give every child one or two (but why on earth are you even discussing these things with the other parents?)

They've probably got another official G&T register that they don't share with parents.

piprabbit Thu 31-Jan-13 13:46:00

I'd ask the school to clarify their process - it does sound odd.

Floggingmolly Thu 31-Jan-13 13:48:11

I've never heard of a school publicly identifying the g & t kids and awarding them with certificates??? shock
Are you sure they weren't just attainment certificates?

sandyballs Thu 31-Jan-13 13:51:45

I haven't mentioned certificates! They were letters home to parents identifying the subjects that their children had been identified as being G&T in.

We were discussing this out of interest, the kids will dicuss it amongst themselves anyway so why not.

Biscuitsneeded Thu 31-Jan-13 13:54:48

Oh, don't worry, it's all just a (probably moribund) fad and it doesn't mean much. Senior Management will have hassled each department to nominate some students G&T in their subject, it will have been ignored for a week or so while everyone did their real job, and then someone has cobbled together a list at the last minute, perhaps overlooking some students. That's all.

Officially, 'gifted' is for academically gifted students and 'talented' is for PE, drama, music, art etc. Some schools go way overboard and identify 'gifted' children all over the place, filling their parents' heads with the erroneous notion that they have somehow spawned a genius when in fact they just have a reasonably clever child. I'm an MFL teacher in a comp, and I can safely say I currently only teach one child in the whole school who I would genuinely consider 'gifted' in my subject, although of course in tops sets there are quite a lot of bright children. If your DD2 has medals and trophies then surely that tells her and you all you need to know about her abilities; pay no attention to school box-ticking!!

sandyballs Thu 31-Jan-13 13:56:02

grin

Floggingmolly Thu 31-Jan-13 13:56:12

Sorry, misread that bit. Most schools don't make "official" announcements for the very reason you've just encountered.

lljkk Thu 31-Jan-13 14:01:21

Maybe it's an admin mistake?

I'm not sure why you should care, except to be amused at bureaucratic lunacies, because not clear if it impacts anyone else but the child who got the letter.

I remember overhearing a conversation when I was at school between PE teacher and the Mum of my friend when I was a teenager:
Mum of my friend: 'How is Rachel doing in netball?
PE teacher: 'Well of course Rachel doesn't have the best coordination, so she'll always struggle.'
Mum of my friend: "You know she represented Great Britain at an international (name of sport) event in Germany last week?'
PE teacher: 'Oh that's nice that she has a hobby outside school'

'Rachel' (not real name) competed in the Sydney Olympics. Not sporty though, according to our PE teacher. Just not very well co-ordinated, poor thing...

Bit of a random anecdote, but it sounds like your DD is a 'Rachel' - a genuine athlete. Whether the school 'get' that or not isn't as important as encouraging her in her activities outside school - as you clearly realise since you've supported her thus far.

Patchouli Thu 31-Jan-13 14:07:50

Are they in the same year?
As I've got a vague idea that it's the top 10% of the cohort or something - so it might depend on who else is in the school year.

sandyballs Thu 31-Jan-13 14:16:45

Blimey Becstar! Just goes to show.

I'm annoyed with myself for being so bothered to be honest. Does it really matter? Probably not at the end of the day. But it will matter hugely to DD2 who, like me, will just not understand it, and I can't explain this to her. I could last night when she didn't receive a letter, it was very easy to explain that there were other children in her year who were achieving more, trying harder, and that's why the were picked. I also told her to just do her best in every subject and see what happens, that's all anyone can do, their best.

But this makes a mockery of that mentality. She's bloody good at sport, excels in it, yet a friend of hers who bloody hates PE and goes out of his way to avoid any exercise is is identified as G&T.

They are in the same year, year 7.

Makes me question this school to be honest, which is probably ridiculous.

ReallyTired Thu 31-Jan-13 14:35:20

Gifted and talented selection in schools is bizarre. Prehaps Rachael was less sporty at the age of five when the gifted and talented children were identified. The children who believed they were "gifted" at sport sat on their arses and got fat where as Rachael did every sporting activity going.

I suspect that school sport is a bit like school music in that you have to go to outside clubs to get any decent coaching. Most teachers have no clue how to teach music and I suspect little clue on teaching sport.

A child may have raw talent but needs to work to make progress. Having potential is not enough; they need a growth mindset.

"I could last night when she didn't receive a letter, it was very easy to explain that there were other children in her year who were achieving more, trying harder, and that's why the were picked. I also told her to just do her best in every subject and see what happens, that's all anyone can do, their best."

You have set your child up with the necessary mindset to be sucessful in life.

mindsetonline.com/howmindsetaffects/parentsteacherscoaches/index.html

You have resisted the tempation to say its unfair and made clear that all she has do is her best.

iseenodust Thu 31-Jan-13 15:51:32

IMO it's quite random certainly at primary level. DS was identified as talented in PE. DH and I just spluttered at parents' evening 'but he didn't come in the first three in any of the sports day races'.

noseynoonoo Thu 31-Jan-13 16:01:52

I wouldn't worry. It sounds like everyone is being found to be G or T in something. The real issue is whether being on the register means extra help.

My daughter is Gifted - and gets no additional support.

seeker Thu 31-Jan-13 17:54:09

<clutching at straws> could this other child be particularly talented at one particular sport?

PE is probably a subject where the child can have talents displayed outside of the school sports.

A friend of my was hopeless at team sports but regularly won sailing and team sailing competitions. She was considered talented. Her school recognised that though as puting her on the G&T register meant they could allow her to go for time off to sail extra 'special' lessons

auntevil Thu 31-Jan-13 18:22:53

With really tired with the notion of raw talent.
DS1 loves sport and tries so very very hard. He's OK - gets in some teams, but not all that he would like.
DS2 - couldn't give a monky's, but has an annoying gift of being able to turn his hand to any sport he tries - or is made to try. Doesn't bother to try out for any team.
I remember a documentary on professional sportsmen where they tried their visual acuity and manual dexterity on different tests, and tried them at other sports. The top athletes performed significantly better at all the tests and sports they had never tried before than the average result.
This will also be similar to prior to the olympics where UK PLC held open days for tall sporty types within an age range. They tried them out and put some in for special training in the sports that they thought they would be good at.
Can't remember who, but 1 athlete was chosen at this event, given a new sport and won a medal within the 4 years. That is natural talent

TallulahMcFey Thu 31-Jan-13 19:59:09

My daughter is in a gifted and talented maths group of 8 children in her year 6 class in a year of 60 children. My elder daughter has been identified several times as gifted and talented in things like science, languages, music and maths. We all know that neither of them are gifted and talented in anything other than the government definition. They are both clever children but someone has to be at the top end of the class. They aren't clearly at the top of the class, well ahead of the others and finding things so easy that they need extra work and events to hold their interest. They are fortunate enough to find school relatively easy and do not need any extra money spent on them and we feel the money would be spent of truly gifted and talented children (not 10 per cent of a year) and the bottom end of the class. They are happy to take the benefits from any selection - usually trips and extra usually quite fun classes - but we don't feel that they are gifted (which is academically) or talented (sports, music etc).

choccyp1g Thu 31-Jan-13 20:11:58

For the posters who said "it doesn't matter it is just a list".
At DS school, the ones identified as G&T at a combination of 2 particular subjects are getting taken on a special trip to the Harry Potter World.

My DS is gutted to not fit the criteria, as he is G&T in Harry Potter.. could do Mastermind in all the crazy detail, and quote you long chunks etc.etc.

TallulahMcFey Thu 31-Jan-13 20:23:14

Incidentally, my eldest was a bit put out when she got the only A star in GCSE music, yet when it came to giving out awards of excellence in certain subjects, someone else got the music one. Sometimes these things don't seem particularly fair or thought through but best not to worry about it and just be happy that she is as able as she is.

ReallyTired Thu 31-Jan-13 20:33:02

"At DS school, the ones identified as G&T at a combination of 2 particular subjects are getting taken on a special trip to the Harry Potter World."

That truely stinks. It sends out a terrible message to all the children at that school. Why do gifted children need extra treats? Its a complete waste of public money.

Clever children are not fundermentally better human beings and many teens would love a trip to Harry Potter World. There would be more justification for taking children with major special needs for a treat to Harry Potter World. (Ie. the child who under goes several painful operations inorder to manage his cerabral palsy or the child who is losing his sight or hearing or the child who has been hospitalised with anorexia)

TallulahMcFey Thu 31-Jan-13 20:39:02

Incidentally, my eldest was a bit put out when she got the only A star in GCSE music, yet when it came to giving out awards of excellence in certain subjects, someone else got the music one. Sometimes these things don't seem particularly fair or thought through but best not to worry about it and just be happy that she is as able as she is.

steppemum Thu 31-Jan-13 20:43:33

our school sends home a sort of mini report at half term and end of term. Their NC levels in reading, writing, maths and science are on there.

Each subject is marked as SEN, below average, average, above average or gifted and talented.

The label is directly connected to the level. ie, average NC level for age = average, plus 1 level (or maybe 2, don't know exactly) = above average; and plus (3 or 4 or whatever the criteria is) = gifted and talented.

That way it isn't arbitrary, it is based on something. So dd1 who loves maths and won the maths whiz cup twice last year is marked as above average but NOT G&T, because her NC level wasn't high enough.

But in previous school we were told it was top 10% of school regardless of level because that was the way they highlighted who needed different lessons, and that would vary from school to school. So you could be in a class of bright kids and not classed as G&T and move schools and be in a class of not bright kids and be classed as G&T. (I never understood that system, prefer our current way)

landofsoapandglory Thu 31-Jan-13 20:44:02

I think the G&T register is a load of old hat TBH, even though both of my DC are on it.

When DS1 was in Yr7 he was at level 8 for English, and was at the top of the top set, but the head of English(who was also the G&T co-ordinator)didn't think he should be on it. His teacher had a battle with her to get him on it, it didn't bother me, but the teacher said he should be recognised because at their school they get to visit universities, theatres and other places if they are on the G&T register. He did prove his worth of being in it, he won local and regional writing competitions and came top of the school in both English Lit and Lang GCSE exams.

DS2 was put on it for science and sport, we had no idea he was on it for science until he was in Yr9.

I think in your position I might ask for an explanation from the PE teacher.

SanityClause Thu 31-Jan-13 20:51:28

Your DS should meet my DD1, choccyp1g. She knows everything about HP, and can also quote huge chunks of it, not to mention Potter Puppet Pals and A Very Potter Musical!

friendlyface12 Thu 31-Jan-13 20:53:16

Different teachers I suspect (I'm an English teacher). Teachers are asked to add to the G&T list. Using their knowledge of the students and recent grades. It may be that one dd teacher was more on the ball than the others. Perhaps her PE teacher was absent when deadline for list went out? You could make an appointment/email to flag up the anomaly with the head if you feel like you want to.
There's no formula to it, just teacher's judgements. Don't worry, I think you said the right thing to dd.

diabolo Thu 31-Jan-13 21:11:03

G&T is a joke. The most talented student artist where I work isn't on the G&T list for Art, nor even included on the Art Leaders programme (20 or so kids go and teach at the Primary schools nearby).

She is talented, a role model, never in trouble, personable and very upset that she has been overlooked.

The art teacher has "favourites" and she isn't one of them. Disgraceful.

TheFallenMadonna Thu 31-Jan-13 21:20:22

We don't have G&T any more. We have "more able". Only it is a blanket label, and it is solely based on average KS2 Maths and English point score. Which means it's not subject specific, not even to Maths and English. I find it unhelpful. And poorly understood.

Pantone363 Thu 31-Jan-13 21:24:00

Maybe the DS hates sports but sprints ridiculously fast when he does have to and is actually G&T. Or throws a javelin bloody far or something.

But G&T is bollocks anyway, our head goes out of her way to avoid discussing it with parents, nobody knows if their own child is on the register and its very much a box ticking exercise.

IDK Thu 31-Jan-13 21:26:35

Incidentally, my eldest was a bit put out when she got the only A star in GCSE music, yet when it came to giving out awards of excellence in certain subjects, someone else got the music one.

We had a similar situation in another subject. The teacher was always telling DS how good he was, a natural, his best student in recent years. He then gave the Year 11 prize to someone else! I enquired about it and was told that it was based on the mock exam result in January.
It backfired on the teacher though. It made DS have a rethink and he is now going to read a different subject at University. The winner of the prize, meanwhile, left the school after Year 11 to go to college. So the teacher cannot boast about either one now. Plonker.

BooksandaCuppa Thu 31-Jan-13 21:38:59

steppemum - please tell me your school doesn't really class SEN as akin to 'below below average' in its attainment scale.

If it does, it's truly shocking that they don't know that SEN does not mean 'low academic ability?

I have just come back from ds's yr 7 parents evening having been told he is top of the top set in English, maths and science. And he also has SEN (Asperger's) with a statement to go alongside that.

I'm pleased he's not at 'your' school!

Coconutty Thu 31-Jan-13 22:00:03

Do you think your friend is lying?

steppemum Thu 31-Jan-13 22:00:53

books, I just got a report out to check

they put SEN if the attainment in that subject is so many levels below average for age and therefore child is getting or needs extra support in that subject. So I assume that could mean you could get SEN for say maths and G&T for say English.

The levels are of course private to parents. They started it I think because it takes the opinion of the teacher out of it and shows the parents a clear line compared with where they should be.
report also has a place for effort and attitude.

This seems to be different from an SEN statement, as this is only looking at their attainment in certain areas. (English Maths and science)

School is actually very good with statemented children, we have quite a few and my friend's son is on the ASD spectrum and very happy and well catered for there. I assume on his report the levels are related to his academic acheivement, as the report doesn't refer to or comment on his statement. (report is very short, proper reports only come out in summer)

I had actually not thought about it form that perspective at all, although I was initially surprised to see that they put SEN on. I will ask my friend tomorrow about ti and how she feels.

Thanks for raising that

seeker Thu 31-Jan-13 22:11:07

Steppenmum- -please tell me this isn't a state school........

steppemum Thu 31-Jan-13 22:20:34

yes state school. One of 6 in a federation, they all do it they are all rated as /getting towards being rated as outstanding.

Actually it is a brilliant school, the staff are great and the kids happy and as I said it has a good reputation for doing well with statemented kids. It is a very caring school and supportive. This isn't an attitude in the school, just a report stating where they are on NC level.

It seems to be becoming more common too, I have heard of a couple of other schools who have started to do the same thing. Mabe it is a new ofsted inspired trend?

The reason I quoted it was because it seems that they use the G&T in relation to NC level, and not arbitrarily given by a teacher to their favourite as some have said on this thread.

seeker Thu 31-Jan-13 22:27:46

But SEN and G&T aren't NC levels! Please do something about this- it's outrageous!

seeker Thu 31-Jan-13 22:29:11

And if anyone genuinely thinks that G&T status is arbitrarily awarded to teacher's favourites, then do something about that too. It's not supposed to be done like that.

BooksandaCuppa Thu 31-Jan-13 22:34:10

Well it does seem very odd in the context of everything else you've mentioned about the school.

And I agree with your assessment of their intention with this kind of 'ranking' as being generally more helpful than how some schools choose their g and t lists.

My points still stands though that it is an incredibly strange way to a child's academic attainment. Ds is both SEN and g and t in at least two areas of the curriculum (he's SEN in every area of the curriculum - he can't stop being autistic!)

His school, btw, actually refer to g and t as 'advanced potential' and it's assessed by a mixture of Cats tests, sats results and ongoing assessment. And the 'reward' for being on this 'list' is things like week-long science masterclasses in the school hols. Trips to theme parks seem a little bonkers. More of a reward for being clever than an extension of potential.

sandyballs Thu 31-Jan-13 22:38:22

Thanks for replies. I will email school tom, tried a couple of times today but deleted it as finding it very difficult to put into words without sounding like "one of those mothers" grin.

I'm very curious to know the criteria for choosing though as it obviously isn't the top 10% in each subject.

Friends boy is a very clever lad but sport isn't his thing, he's the first to say how much he hates it. And that is all sport, no interest in it at all. So now he will have opportunities for extra PE and wont want to do it.

steppemum Thu 31-Jan-13 22:38:45

seeker, leaving our school aside, what is the criteria for G&T? Because I have heard (from different schools) several different definitions.

eg - top 10% of kids in the class in the subject. So if the class is really overall not very good, then a fairly average child gets classed as G&T, but they aren't actually gifted, just a bit better than their peers? So how does that work?

or - child is acheiving way beyond what you would expect of them in this subject for this age, which is when you boil it down actually the same as saying they are xx number of NC levels above the average for this age, which you have said it isn't.

I am not trying to be combative, I really don't get how it is decided and on what basis (I am talking about maths and English as opposed to art and music which I suspect are different)

So what are the criteria? How is any particular child judged to be G&T? What sort of eveidence does the teacher look for or need?

BooksandaCuppa Thu 31-Jan-13 22:52:01

Sorry to have derailed the thread, OP. Something does sound a little off in your case.

steppenmum I think the top 10% of cohort thing is generally how state schools do it. As you say, that's quite arbitrary as cohorts can vary enormously. And as has been pointed out on many an occasion, if a child goes to a selective secondary, then they'll suddenly find themselves no longer at the top of the pile.

Of course with a subject like art or PE the criteria can be even more random and prone to accusations of favouritism.

As I said, at ds's school they base a lot of it on cats tests as they (as much an anything can) measure raw potential. They do, of course, put what they can in place to ensure all children achieve what their raw potential suggests, not just those in the top 2% or whatever.

I think there kinds of assessments are a huge step forward from 'my day' in terms of not allowing bright but dyslexic, or bright but lazy or average but from a challenging home or whatever type of child to underachieve.

BooksandaCuppa Thu 31-Jan-13 22:54:08

Also, as I think I mentioned up thread, it seems to be more and more common to refer to children as having 'advanced potential' or something similar which is more what it should be about, IMO.

BooksandaCuppa Thu 31-Jan-13 22:57:45

Sorry for typos and getting your name wrong. Blooming non-branded tablet!

senua Thu 31-Jan-13 22:58:35

It comes down to politics, steppenmum.
The original definition was "child is acheiving way beyond what you would expect of them in this subject for this age" but for some reason a lot of schools decided that they didn't have any pupils like that. So they changed the definition to "top 10% of kids in the class in the subject" - try wriggling out of that definition!wink

senua Thu 31-Jan-13 23:02:51

Dang, I copied B&C's spelling of your name. That will teach me not to go back to the original source.blush

steppemum Thu 31-Jan-13 23:04:53

I also like the advanced potential

we are primary so no cats tests.

The trouble with G&T and using top 10% is that it is a total misnomer. To me gifted should mean that they are gifted in any context.

On the other hand, it makes sense in a school setting to identify the top 10% and ensure that you are stretching them, in the same way that you identify the bottom x% and make sure they are getting the help they need. After all if you are not careful, teaching can teach to the middle of any group. So then poor cohort or good, the top and bottom are not forgotton. The term gifted and talented then seems rather strange, because it is only in relation to the other children.

bumpybecky Thu 31-Jan-13 23:09:38

sandymum you know the sterotypical PE teacher - the one that wants to torture children by forcing them to play rugby & hockey in the snow / torrential rain etc....

well I think there's one out there that's found a new way to torment children. Find the ones that hate PE the most, declare them G&T so they have to do even more PE.

work of evil genius I tell you hmm

BooksandaCuppa Thu 31-Jan-13 23:11:09

Ha ha - that has got to be the answer!

steppemum Thu 31-Jan-13 23:12:05

I also like the advanced potential

we are primary so no cats tests.

The trouble with G&T and using top 10% is that it is a total misnomer. To me gifted should mean that they are gifted in any context.

On the other hand, it makes sense in a school setting to identify the top 10% and ensure that you are stretching them, in the same way that you identify the bottom x% and make sure they are getting the help they need. After all if you are not careful, teaching can teach to the middle of any group. So then poor cohort or good, the top and bottom are not forgotton. The term gifted and talented then seems rather strange, because it is only in relation to the other children.

BooksandaCuppa Thu 31-Jan-13 23:22:30

The funny thing about the top 10% thing is that some primaries have really tiny cohorts. In some of the year groups at ds's old primary that could have been less than a whole child...!

They only used to send letters home or 'identify' children to their parents as such if there was a specific day or activity at the local secondary with places. Ie, in some years there were 'g and t' scientists and other years 'g and t' artists or something. All very arbitrary (the topics not the children).

I still think Steppemum's school is being quite old-fashioned, not to say offensive in the terms listed in its 'gradings'. What's wrong with just below and above average with attached nc levels so parents can see how 'far' for themselves?

steppemum Thu 31-Jan-13 23:30:41

books I have to agree with you about using SEN on the gradings list. I do think it is inappropriate the more I think about it.

The thing is, they were brought in by a new head who turned the school round a few years ago, took it from satisfactory to outstanding within about 3 years. This tracking of children's levels and informing parents is seen as one of her big successes. The tracking is followed up, so any child who hasn't made a sub level of progress after 3 terms (what we used to call half terms) is flagged up and 2/3 teachers sit down and look at child's work and how they are doing and try and identify if there is a need or how they can support this child to progress.

She is now exectutive head of 6 schools across the federation and each school has its own head under her. Ofsted love it, and to be fair as I said the school is great, the results are good (we have very high value added score) and the school is popular now. dd2 reception class is awesome. Truly fab place to be for a 5 year old.

seeker Thu 31-Jan-13 23:36:56

I find it really hard to believe that OfSTED are happy with SEN being used as a NC descriptor.....

steppemum Thu 31-Jan-13 23:42:26

well, they love the system.

This head has just been asked to go and be advisor for something or other they like her so much.

BooksandaCuppa Thu 31-Jan-13 23:42:35

Sounds a great school, then, other than this one factor. If I were a parent there, I would most probably be making a complaint, though. It's hard enough to explain to other people/parents about my son's disabilities and abilities without such unhelpful and outdated definitions. (see recent thread - 'how can a school with a lot of Sen get good sats results?' 'because Sen is nothing to do with intelligence!' Grr. I know you know what I mean, anyway!!!

steppemum Thu 31-Jan-13 23:55:41

and although the terminology is hmm the principle is good in that the tracking of every child in this way means that they quickly spot if a child is not progressing and find a new way of approaching things to start them off again etc. They are so on the ball. Would be scary to be a teacher there though.

BooksandaCuppa Fri 01-Feb-13 00:02:43

Please don't think I'm being narky, but what you're describing is not really anything particularly unusual. It's just what most good schools do as a matter of course. Tracking and accounting for progress is something all schools and teachers are doing each and every day. They have to.

seeker Fri 01-Feb-13 09:52:52

Any good school can track it's children like this- evennin my ds's distinctly average primary, teachers could always tell you what NC level a child was currently working at.

It's the use of SEN as a descriptor that I am focussing on. I a go smacked that OFSTED is letting this pass, and can only think there has been some sort of misunderstanding.

BooksandaCuppa Fri 01-Feb-13 09:58:55

I agree entirely, seeker. I think we also have to agree it's not steppemum's fault so I don't want to harangue her. I do know though, that, - if it's not some sort of misunderstanding - I would be complaining loudly were it my school.

seeker Fri 01-Feb-13 10:00:57

Oh,yes of course it's not her fault! I wonder if we could encourage her to query it, though?

BooksandaCuppa Fri 01-Feb-13 10:15:10

We might have...

sandyballs Fri 01-Feb-13 11:22:52

I have an 'explanation' from the school:

There are 9 classes in year 7 and the top 2 from each of those classes are chosen as G&T for each subject. So despite all the literature saying it's the top 5-10% in each subject that obviously isn't the case. They have to choose two from each class, even if no-one in that particular class shines at the subject and half of another class excel.

I'm dropping it now, not worth the effort, it's obviously all bollocks.

BooksandaCuppa Fri 01-Feb-13 11:47:05

That's madness, OP. Hopefully your daughter will not be too upset by the whole thing. The main thing is she continues to enjoy and excel at all her sports.

ibizagirl Fri 01-Feb-13 13:18:06

It's all a load of rubbish in my opinion. Dd on G&T since starting primary school and she is now 13 and year 9. Nothing much happened at primary school because i wasn't told dd was on this "list" until she nearly finished year 6. Had some parents talk about us because apparently "how come she (dd) is on the G&T list if her mum is a single parent". Don't know how they knew about it because i never spoke about it. Anyway, since starting high school dd had an extra couple of trips to go on as there were only about 8 children chosen for them. She is the only one as far as she knows that is on the list and ALL the children within top set are classed as G&T in maths and english. Although there are some in mfl who are identified and also in science. There is a meeting every so often to go to but dd says the trips are not really her thing so she doesn't bother to join. The last one was to the Houses of Parliament and she didn't want to go!!. I was told it goes on CAT tests that the children have. Don't know anything about them to be honest. Good luck.

Biscuitsneeded Fri 01-Feb-13 14:24:33

Sandyballs, good to know there is a nicely bonkers, couldn't make-it-up explanation. Im a teacher, and used to dealing with this sort of school nonsense, and even I had hadn't foreseen just picking 2 kids out of each class as a strategy. Then again, as we well know (and please, nobody take offence), PE teachers aren't traditionally the brightest...

momb Fri 01-Feb-13 14:40:43

The G+T register doesn't even get mentioned at our cluster of schools. I only found out very recently that my ED is on the list for a couple of subjects, even though I knew she was getting extra lessons to do a couple of GCSEs early. I think it would be awful to have them handed out like end of year awards in letters home. It's only a funding thing after all isn't it?

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