Things aren't looking good for Torvy at school. The bullying continues sporadically and his academic performance is slipping. We have had a run-in with one teacher and look set to have one with another teacher. He has simply given up on maths.
In despair, we have started looking around at other schools. Yesterday we went on a tour of a grammar school outside of the MK local authority (MK doesn't have grammar schools). We were quite impressed with the school, and it quickly became clear that Beej would excel there. This exactly what happened before when we looked at a private school because Torvy was struggling - it looked good for Bjö
rn but not for Torvy.
Grammar schools have a selection process, unlike the kids' current school which take kids who live in their catchment. Normally, kids write an optional exam called the 11+ in Year 6, and they get selected or rejected by grammar schools on the basis of their scores. We didn't bother with these because there are no grammar schools in MK. The school
we looked at yesterday is the only one within a reasonable distance. It has the highest criteria in the county, and is enormously oversubscribed. When kids apply to go there after Year 7, obviously it's too late for the 11+, so the school runs separate tests. They can choose to test a child or not, and they base this decision on academic performance.
rn's case this is not a problem, because he has done a set of high school exams last year, and aced them. Torvy hasn't done any yet, so decisions in respect of him would have to be based on his CAT predictors (predictions made at the beginning of Year 8 of how well they are expected to do when they write their GCSEs 4 years later). He didn't do very well on those, so the chances are slim that the school will even agree to test him. (Note: Bjö
rn's CATs weren't great either, because he was sick when he took them, but he is totally outperforming the predictions)
We desperately want to get Torvy out of Stantonbury Campus, but all the options seem only to be available to Bjö
rn, who will do well wherever he goes - including staying at Stantonbury. So we have aching hearts and a quandary to deal with. Bearing in mind that kids from grammar schools get a better look from the top universities, do we split them up, and give Bjö
rn the opportunity of going to an elite school? Do we deny Bjö
rn this opportunity because Torvy can't get in anywhere else? Torvy's academic potential might not be as great as his brother's but he's still a bright kid and he's being allowed to slip through the cracks. We can't stand by and watch that happen, but there seem to be no courses of action open to us.
What to do, what to do....