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MUMS - were any of YOU tutored for competitive London schools?

(49 Posts)
LePetitPrince Sat 15-Jun-13 22:54:56

I keep hearing about extreme tutoring/prep for selective state and independent schools, particularly in London and surrounding areas and how it is a recent phenomenon..
But recently I have met some mums who went to those same schools and they admitted that they had been tutored even back then (which must be 30+ years ago in some cases), one of them for the 7+.
So, were you tutored for entry to competitive London/surrounding schools as a child and would you put your own child through the same process?

megsmouse Sat 15-Jun-13 23:42:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Tanith Sun 16-Jun-13 00:24:43

Further back than that, I should think. I once picked up a book of Scholarship practice exercises and papers at a book fair. It had English, Maths and Intelligence Tests sections with answers in the back and talked about the scholarship exam that the child reader was preparing for.
The Maths was in pounds, shillings and pence and the book dated from the 50s.

madaki Sun 16-Jun-13 07:09:42

I went to a selective grammar school and I wasn't tutored at all, as far as I know, nobody else in my year was tutored either (started in 1995)
Now, it is practically impossible to get into that school without extensive tutoring.

Kitchencupboards Sun 16-Jun-13 07:36:10

Yes, I was 30 years ago and so was everyone else I knew, I also did Bond books or whatever they were at the time. Tutoring has always been there.

JoyMachine Sun 16-Jun-13 07:47:48

Yes, Manchester Grammar though, was tutored by parents, gained a place 7+ a chronological year early, then parents wouldn't allow me to take up the place confused

We got ours into highly selective pre-prep at 3+, and 4+.
We didn't coach them, as we felt if they were coached they'd not manage in the school if they got a place.
We did have a major wibble about DS' assessment, but he amazed us on the day- he definitely hides his light under a bushel!

Kikithecat Sun 16-Jun-13 07:50:41

I went to a South London grammar. I wasn't tutored and neither was anyone else as far as I know. It was pretty much unheard of. (70s)

Eastpoint Sun 16-Jun-13 07:55:28

A school friend of mine told me recently she had been tutored throughout our school days, having been tutored to get in. She started at the school in 1977. Since she finished university she hasn't read a single book. Both of her siblings have moved as far away from their mother as is physically possible; I presume they were treated similarly.

PseudoBadger Sun 16-Jun-13 08:00:36

I was tutored for Henrietta Barnett (1990). However, the contrary 10 year old that I was decided to fail the exam on purpose as I didn't want to go to an all girl school blush

ThreeBeeOneGee Sun 16-Jun-13 08:12:00

I had six months of weekly Maths tutoring for Haberdashers (the one in Elstree). I realise it's not exactly in London, but it's a school of that ilk.

My parents arranged the tutor because they were concerned that my primary school hadn't fully covered the Maths topics that were included in the test.

The tutoring itself wasn't onerous as I enjoyed Maths anyway. Once I started at the school, I didn't struggle because the tutoring had stopped; I was in top sets for everything, including Maths.

It was absolutely the right school for me, so I think my parents did the right thing.

I did not send DS1 and DS2 to a professional tutor, but I did put in a lot of time and effort towards preparing them both for the entrance test for their secondary school.

ThreeBeeOneGee Sun 16-Jun-13 08:15:19

My mother told me that she and some other classmates were given weekly verbal reasoning practice at primary school before their entrance tests. This was in the late 1940s.

My father got a scholarship to secondary school and was tutored in preparation for sitting that (mid 1950s).

Gigondas Sun 16-Jun-13 08:28:28

Yes I was tutored 30 years ago - it wasn't uncommon then.

horsemadmom Sun 16-Jun-13 08:34:43

Prep school did all the work. No tutoring needed.

Porka Sun 16-Jun-13 09:50:20

No tutoring here and I went to a high flying London grammar in the 1970s (it changed to comp when I was there). There were quite a few grammar schools in the central London area so overall it was less competitive and they interviewed as well, so naice posh (but poor) kids like me would tend to get a place. Thinking about the other grammars I could have gone to, Greycoats also turned into a comp and Godolphin became independent.

KingscoteStaff Sun 16-Jun-13 11:53:28

No tutoring for my JAGS entrance exam back in the 70s.

I think my best friend had maths coaching for the St Paul's scholarship paper that year, though, as I remember she couldn't come to Brownies for a couple of weeks.

TheEarlOf Sun 16-Jun-13 18:05:18

I went to a private selective girls school in Hampstead at 7 (Y3) in the 1990s [I applied for a lot of the selective girls London schools] I wasn't tutored for them and I got places in all of them

teacherwith2kids Sun 16-Jun-13 20:01:57

I got an 11+ full scholarship to a highly selective girls' boarding school having never seen an exam paper in my life, let alone had any tutoring - and then skipped Y7 as it was believed that I would find it a waste of time.

HOWEVER, there were probably only a coupld of hundred scholarship applicants, enabling the papers to be marked 'in context', taking into account each child's background and needs (I would not have gone without the 100% scholarship, and the school knew that), and allowing most children to be interviewed. So the playing field could be more actively 'balanced' between those straight from state primaries with no tutoring, and heavily-tutored or prep-school prepared girls.

LePetitPrince Sun 16-Jun-13 20:09:32

The mixed bag of replies are even more interesting than I expected so thanks for that.. Exam papers and tutoring from the 40s and 50s - unbelievable, you'd think we'd just invented such a thing - and then others for whom tutoring was unheard of. Why the difference I wonder..

Lol at PseudoBadger for failing HB entrance exam on purpose! I can imagine mine doing the same..

basildonbond Sun 16-Jun-13 21:30:50

I took exams for 4 very academic girls schools in west and southwest London (mid 70s) - I got into them all from a big-standard primary having had no tuition at all. I think my mum showed me a past paper the week before but other than that there was no special preparation, however I had grown up surrounded by books and music and was just 'expected' to do well. I passed all four with flying colours and chose the one where I'd felt most at home during the interviews

basildonbond Sun 16-Jun-13 21:31:24

Bog-standard even ...

scottishmummy Sun 16-Jun-13 21:36:05

as you'd expect no I didn't attend fancy London school
lol,guess I'm not the target audience

Yellowtip Sun 16-Jun-13 22:59:38

No, no tutoring, nothing except ordinary school.

Yellowtip Sun 16-Jun-13 23:02:40

And got the offer of two direct grant places at South London GDST schools

RussiansOnTheSpree Mon 17-Jun-13 10:00:44

DH went to QE boys Barnet. No tutoring. He just rocked up to his primary school one day and discovered it was 11+ day. Didn't even know what the 11+ was, because his brother (who went to a sec mod) was 8 years older than him. DH likes to cite this as an example of how amazingly brilliant he is. I like to cite it as an example of how flukey luck can be sometimes grin

PseudoBadger Mon 17-Jun-13 10:17:29

When was that Russians? When boys from my primary were looking at schools in 1990 QE boys wasn't even a grammar, it wasnt anything special. I was really shocked when I realised it's now successful!

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