Council to quiz schools over 11-plus results
New test seems to be far from fairer
GRAMMAR schools will be quizzed next month over the first 11-plus results released since the new test was brought in.
The Buckinghamshire Grammar School Heads group will appear before the county’s education, skills and children’s services select committee.
The meeting follows criticism of the exam created by the Centre or Evaluation and Monitoring (CEM), which was introduced last year and was intended to be ‘tutor proof ’.
But results released after Freedom of Information requests from campaign group Local, Equal, Excellent, showed even fewer grammar school places went pupils.
Rebecca Hickman, who wrote the report, Dr Katy Simmons and Derek Berry, are calling for the exam to be abandoned until an alternative can be developed.
Mr Berry spoke at the latest education select committee meeting on Tuesday last week, asking what the county council could do to hold grammar schools to account.
He said: “All the evidence I have seen shows it has not been successful.
“A significant number of state educated children in the last exam failed to get a grammar school place.”
He added he had been told the report was confidential, and argued the results should have been made public.
Bucks County Council spokesman said legally the
school council has no duty to publish the results and it cannot hold the schools to account, but aims to work with them.
He said grammar schools will address concerns when they appear at the meeting.
He added: “I made it clear we asked grammar schools to present their data and we have asked the grammar schools to do that.
“It is their data and they need to be held to account for the test that they are implementing and that’s what I have said consistently and that is why we have arranged for them to come to the next meeting.”
The secondary transfer exam results and analysis will be discussed on November 4, before the grammar schools will present evidence on November 19.