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Pass mark on past reigate grammar maths papers?

(15 Posts)
hercules1 Tue 18-Feb-14 19:44:06

Hi. Just trying to get a feel of what sort of mark at this stage of year 5 a child should be scoring on past papers like reigate grammar maths papers to stand a chance for superselective grammars?


hercules1 Tue 18-Feb-14 19:45:27

Oh and sort of marks that would be worthy of considering trying for a scholarship - not necessarily for reigate though.

Quandry Tue 18-Feb-14 20:03:16

DS was getting about 90-95% and got a scholarship smile

(He was getting similar on English too)

I have heard that the pass mark for RGS was about 70% a few years ago, but think it has got more competitive since the new head arrived?

Super selective state grammars like Wilson's etc will be much higher.

LadyMuck Wed 19-Feb-14 10:05:35

At this stage in year five I would have been elated if DS had scored over 90% on one of the Reigate papers! But I would probably also have taken my foot off the pedal and it would have ended in failure in the end.

In some respects it matters less about the precise mark at this stage, and more about identifying what the issues need to be worked on for the next six months. Have they covered the actual topics? Speed and accuracy are key ones – how well installed are all those timetables?! And finally there is the issue about comprehending what the question is asking for in terms of the underlying mathematics. Is this the first timed paper they have done in the last couple of months, or is it the fourth in as many days? (There is a memory muscle to be worked).

With all of those factors in mind, I would be loathe to put a precise percentage on the paper for you. But in my experience all of those issues can be worked upon in the next six months, especially if you have a child who was willing to actually sit down at this stage and do the paper either for a full hour or even better complete it within the full hour.

Does that help at all?

hercules1 Wed 19-Feb-14 10:34:53

It helps massively. Thanks Quandry and Ladymuck!!

hercules1 Wed 19-Feb-14 10:41:53

Dd did well and completed it in exactly 3/4hour. Her mistakes were silly ie misreading question and adding rather than taking sort of thing and she was able to correct her mistakes with no help from me so I assume she has good coverage but needs to carefully read the question as no time to go back.

LadyMuck Wed 19-Feb-14 11:46:01

That sounds great then, and certainly it sounds as if speed isn't an issue.

From looking at recent years the standard in the maths seems to have shot forward at a scary level. Now that state schools are doing L6 sats, schools seem to view that they can test everything in L5. Are you looking at the grammars with 2 stage tests eg Sutton or one stage Kent? The 2 stage means you have to cover different types of questions as you get multiple choice in the first round and 2-6 marks questions in the second. And if you are sitting multiple choice then you need to practice multiple choice papers as if course the incorrect answers aren't chosen at random.

In terms of the endless silly mistakes, I wish I could tell you these vanish! By ime practice pays off and they perform on the day...

hercules1 Wed 19-Feb-14 13:18:34

Can't post much now as out. Dd is in state school that is incredibly poor performing and we are trying for sutton grammars and independent croydon schools but would need decent scholarship. She got 92% so if we carry on working at home as much as we can she might stand a chance.

LadyMuck Wed 19-Feb-14 17:16:15

I'd say be grateful you have a dd! If my ds was getting that mark then he wouldn't have done another scrap of work!

hercules1 Wed 19-Feb-14 19:49:40

It's such a gamble though. It doesn't matter how well they do on past papers- the only one that counts is the real thing.

LadyMuck Thu 20-Feb-14 18:50:58

My only consolation, and it is a small one I grant you, is that now that the grammars are more focussed on maths and English rather than VR and NVR, at least any practice is of use for the following 5 years whether they pass or not.

irisha Fri 21-Feb-14 11:25:34


We were not doing timed papers until Chrismas break 2013 for independents' entry exams in January 2014. We were not sitting grammars.

I think my DD would have peaked and burned out if we started doing papers that early (but I do realize that you are sitting grammars which are in September, but even then I would leave time practice until summer). She did do a couple of ISEB 11+ papers and was getting high 90s% in those in mid-February, but those are easy and timing was never an issue. Still, some sort of benchmark.

We focused on covering the syllabus - and we had all KS2 covered by this point in time - and starting to do maths problems by type from various papers (e.g., North London Consortium, Dulwich, KCS, Oundle, Perse). It was key for me that she recognized the type and knew the approach and we also did more stretching, scholarship type problems (MGS, Withington Girls, etc). I would throw an (very!!) occasional short paper (the 45min ones), but NOT timed. I wanted to make sure she has a very firm understanding of topics and secure in number bonds, timetables, vertical addition/subtraction, long division/multiplication, fractions - addition, subtraction, conversion between % and decimals, etc.

The we started doing a paper more regularly (e.g. once every week), but again not timed.

Christmas break was all timed staff.

FWIW, DD was getting mid-90% on RGS papers (only silly mistakes) and high 80%/low 90%s on Dulwich College papers (also silly mistakes only) by end of December. Although we had a couple of disasters on some easy papers where she would suddenly get 60% with ONLY silly mistake and make me panic. She got 3 academic scholarships. English was a weaker subject (and dyslexic tendencies).

What you also need to bear in mind is that RGS papers don't have complex, scholarship type problems so you need to diversify a bit if you are going to be sitting for schools that throw that type of stuff into their papers. DD did an Old Palace paper and it had a couple of less straightforward problems - I'd say it was a bit trickier than RGS (but that was a very old paper that our prep sent home, I don't know what they use now).

Hope this helps.

Beccadugs Fri 21-Feb-14 11:34:06

That's really a great score at this stage.

I had a child come to me who scored 38% on their first past paper at this time of year, and got a full scholarship in the exam.

hercules1 Fri 21-Feb-14 11:54:06

Irisha, thanks. That was a very helpful post. Dd sits grammar in sept and independent I think will be shortly after. You are quite right that the question types on reigate were straight forward. We worked to complete ks2 curriculum by the recent Xmas holidays and are doing the odd paper but also going over in depth and extending topics in maths and English.
Dd is in school in special measures and I work long hours so we are doing stuff when we can.
Thanks, becca. I hadn't considered going for independents until very recently as we won't get a bursary and assumed scholarship was out of our league but will consider it now as really don't want her to go to our local school which is poor. I went to a proper comp in non grammar area in the country and everyone went to the same secondary school so it didn't matter what level you were at.

Quandry Tue 25-Feb-14 12:05:59

hercules - You need to check about % levels of scholarship as there are very few 'full' i.e. 100% ones around theses days. RGS has 'up to 30%' but many are much less e.g. 10-15%.

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