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Admission To Form 1 At 7+
We assess all children whose parents wish to register them for a 7+ place.
Admission at 7+ is via a morning of assessment which takes places on a Saturday early in the Lent term prior to the September of entry to the school.
Before this, we do like parents to have had a chance to see the school, to get a real sense of our unique approach to education through tours and discussions, to ensure that this is the right school for them and for their child.
A report is requested from the child’s current school to help us to understand a child’s background in making our own assessment.
The Assessment Morning
The assessment morning is designed to be as much like a normal morning at school as possible. Children are divided into small groups and are in the pastoral care of one teacher throughout the morning. In the course of the morning they will have Maths, English, Drama &Music, Art and PE, all of which are specialist taught and are observed by at least two teachers.
All in all, the children are never left without support and we help them over any difficulty. They should very much have enjoyed their time with us and while this is a valuable aim in itself, it also allows us to observe them in circumstances where they feel they can be themselves. They should come bouncing out to meet their parents, carrying whatever it is they have made in their Art session, happy that they have been looked after. The anxiety of the occasion will most probably have been felt much more by parents than by their children!
In the English and Maths papers, while we note what children have achieved, we also look very much for potential. Drama/Music, Art and PE are all assessed, as is a child’s reading age. Where a learning difficulty has been reported prior to the assessment, or where a possible learning difficulty becomes apparent during assessment, our Individual Needs specialists produces note as appropriate.
At 4+, we admit up to 40 children to the school and seek only to assure ourselves and parents that our curriculum is appropriate for their child.
At 7+, our motivation is the same – to ensure that a child will be happy within our environment. The average ability of a year group at the school is very significantly above the national average and our curriculum, which leads ultimately to independent senior school entry and scholarship exams, will not be appropriate for all children. In such circumstances, we feel we have a responsibility to parents and to children to take a view of whether a child is likely to proceed happily throughout his or her time at the school.
As a school which is committed to our families and to the relationship between home and school, we naturally give priority to siblings of children already in the school if they will cope happily with our curriculum.
Of the sixteen places we usually have available at this stage, the number of places available to non-siblings will depend on our sibling intake. We like to offer places to all children who would cope happily with our curriculum but the demand for places can cause us to create a ‘waiting list’ of children whom we should be delighted to accept but to whom we are unable to make an initial offer.
Where a child has an identified learning difficulty, our consideration is influenced by two factors – whether we believe that, with appropriate support, a child will thrive at St John’s and whether we are able to make appropriate provision. If we can satisfy ourselves on these counts, we may offer a place but such a process can take a little longer to conclude.
Preparation for joining us
In the Summer term, all those children who will be new to St John’s in the following September are invited to spend time with their new classmates and parents are invited to meet each other and the staff who will be caring for their children. Three new classes are formed at 7+, mixing current and new pupils to ensure that the new children are rapidly and fully integrated when they arrive.
A limited number of Bursaries exists to provide support to children entering or already in the school from Form 1 upwards for whom attendance at the school is deemed by the school to be of particular benefit and where financial support is needed to make this possible. Further details are available from the Admissions Secretary.