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In this introductory article, I will cover some general points of the 11+ experience under three headings:


1- Does your child have a chance?

2- Cut off points for success & how to interpret them

3- General tips for preparation



Does your child have a chance?

Let me start with a positive note. I am a believer in the notion that every child, given the chance, can achieve a great deal. This is the most valuable and eternally refreshing conviction I inherited from my full time teaching experience.


Call me a hypocrite if you like, but I also believe in the parents right to acquire the best possible education for their children. Be it in private school or state selective school or through private tuition. If you can afford it, many private schools are better equipped to deal with the demands of learning that will get your child to a good university, and good luck to you. There are also those state-grammar schools that are second to none in preparing your child for the elite route to the top.


However, these selective schools offer only a limited, very highly sought after places and these places are targeted not only by those who are not fortunate enough to afford private primary education, but also by those who prefer not having to pay a private secondary school when they can enjoy equivalent quality of teaching in these selective schools. So, the competition is extremely tough, especially for the children coming from the state route. In fact, over 70% of the places offered by the state selective schools, are taken up by the candidates from the private sector, where 11+ preparations are taken for granted.


What then? Should the children attending local junior school forget about it? Certainly not. In fact, this is the very reason why majority of the places go to more "fortunate" kids. There are so many able children out there who can break the barrier with a little guidance and encouragement and a lot of determination on the part of their parents. As parents, all we need to do is to create a platform of level playing field for our loved ones. First, we must ourselves believe they can do it. Otherwise, don't even think about it, as the result of failure could be devastating for the child. Be honest with them while trying to raise their self-esteem. Tell them it will not be easy, but if they are prepared to put the effort in and with a bit of luck they can succeed. Don't get me wrong; the word "luck" is not used as a metaphor here, but in its face value. Indeed, even the most capable private school pupils need a bit of luck in the 11+ exams, as all is done and dusted in a matter of 2.5 hours after months of preparation, and years of anxiety.



This passage was taken from a blog published by our editor. The full article contains information about statistics and procedures about 11+ exams, useful tips about revision techniques, exam methodology, time management etc.


If you would like to see the full article, please click the link below to jump to the blog.

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