Tuition for grammar schools
Grammar school preparatory tuition (for schools that charge no fees)
Assessments for entry into a Year Four 11+ group of five state school students in October 2017 are taking place this month. 11+ tuition takes place once a week in term time for two hours. Kindly read the <FAQ> page on this website before you contact me by email in the first instance.
There are no vacancies with me, either now or in the future, for grammar school preparatory students who entered Year Five in 2017. Please do not call me with enquiries for this year group.
Grammar School Assessments
Year 4 students (September 2017)
Assessments for students who entered Year Four in September 2017 are taking place this month. Please read the information on this page, then click <Grammar Schools> and <FAQ> tabs for further information, and then send me an email to the address given. I will then send you full details of the assessment process. Please do not call me until you have read all the information I will send you.
Year 5 students (September 2017)
There are NO PLACES for grammar school preparatory students in Year Five and NO WAITING LIST for this year group. If a Year Five student was to drop out of tuition, I would not replace him or her at this late stage, as this would be unfair on the other four members of the group. For safeguarding reasons, I have a policy of not recommending other tutors, so please do not call or email me for this reason.
The aim of my particular assessment is to identify students performing at a level above the national average, and whose cognitive ability and social maturity are suited to selective education. The assessment is not designed to measure what a child has learned, practised or memorised; rather, its intention is to establish and measure an individual's potential for learning.
If you would like further information regarding the assessment process, please contact me by email first, and do not call me at this stage. If you send me an email via the <Contact Me> page of this website, I will reply with full details within 24 hours. Priority for assessments will go first to brothers and sisters of current or recent students from supportive and engaged families.
Please contact me only if your child entered Year 4 in September, 2017, and is in top sets in both English and Mathematics. Students who have achieved the levels required in both stages of the assessment will be offered tuition on one day a week (either Tuesdays or Wednesdays) in term time.
Grammar School Preparatory Tuition
I offer grammar school preparatory tuition for all the grammar schools in Birmingham and the West Midlands. Grammar school preparation with me is for students who attend state schools only. Tuition takes place in groups of five students or fewer. I specialise in offering tuition for students preparing for the entrance tests administered by the Centre for Evaluation and Management of the University of Durham (CEM).
Schools that use the Durham CEM tests include Bishop Vesey's Grammar School and Sutton Coldfield Girls' Grammar School, the Grammar Schools of King Edward VI in Birmingham, Handsworth Grammar School, Queen Mary's Grammar and High Schools in Walsall, Wolverhampton Girls' High School, Adams' Grammar School in Shropshire, Rugby (girls') High School and Lawrence Sheriff (boys' grammar) School in Warwickshire.
I provide a professional service of relevant 11+ tuition in English (proof-reading, grammar, punctuation and syntax, vocabulary expansion, comprehension and cloze completion), mathematics, verbal and non-verbal reasoning for foundation grammar school entrance preparation (no-fee schools) to children whose assessment indicates that they have the potential to flourish in selective education.
11+ tuition with me is not a soft option! I work in partnership with motivated families and children, and ask for active cooperation from parents - fathers as well as mothers. I require parents to monitor homework, but not assist children directly. Typically, I ask parents to spend between 20 and 30 minutes each day, for five days of the week, revising and testing work that their children have begun in tuition with me.
How do you know whether your child is suited to grammar school education? Your child's potential
I advise parents who are considering 11+ tuition for their children to think very carefully about whether their child is equipped to flourish in selective education. Tuition with me is only for state school students who show promise in a careful and thorough initial assessment.
The assessment is in two stages, and is designed to identify a potential for learning rather than what a child has been taught. For this reason, the assessment identifies bright children who might not be fortunate enough to enjoy a stimulating school environment that is suited to their underlying ability. The assessment comprises:
1. A straightforward reading and comprehension assessment which is conducted over the telephone and online There is no charge for this simple assessment, which will take no more than ten minutes.
2. Depending on the outcome of the reading assessment, I may offer your family the chance to come to meet me here before your child undertakes the more demanding full two-hour assessment in a group (or a 1.5 hour individual assessment if a group assessment is not possible). If I do not offer your child a full assessment after the initial reading assessment, I will explain the reasons to you personally and confidentially. All assessment results are confidential. I charge a fee of £40 for this service, which includes a minimum of three A4 pages of feedback. The assessment has evolved over many years of teaching and thorough research. It is based upon measurable indicators and professional judgement, which does not commit families to unnecessary or unproductive tuition. The assessment identifies specific potential for learning in the areas of vocabulary, comprehension, mathematics, verbal-and non-verbal reasoning. From me, parents will gain a confidential objective and professional view of a child's likelihood of success in the individual grammar school tests, with or without further tuition.
State school students
11+ tuition with me is for students from state (but not independent) primary schools, who are likely to benefit from education in a grammar school.
I offer grammar school preparatory tuition to state schools only. Parents tell me often that their child is bright but isn't at a primary school that gives him or her the 'push' (or 'stretch') that they need for success in the grammar school entrance tests.
In recent years, all of my 11+ students have attended and presently attend state schools in Birmingham, the Black Country, Leicestershire, Shropshire, Staffordshire and Warwickshire. This means that I am happy to discuss prospects for 11+ tuition with me for students from a wide range of state schools, including (and particularly) those schools whose students rarely enter selective grammar school education.
Length of the 11+ course
I offer five terms' tuition in preparation for examinations set by the University of Durham's CEM Centre (currently all selective grammar schools in the West Midlands region).
Tuition with me begins in Year Four, and not before. My 11+ students follow a planned scheme of work, and begin and end tuition at the same time. There is no wasteful repetition of the syllabus for some, at the expense of others. Out of consideration to my students, I do not fill places in the (thankfully very rare) event of students dropping out of tuition after the first term.
A planned programme of work will prepare children for all selective grammar schools in the Birmingham, Wolverhampton, Shropshire, Walsall and Warwickshire regions. The group's focus will be on the no-fee grammar schools, but I also offer individuals within that group individual tuition which prepares for those premier-league selective independent schools which offer generous scholarships and bursaries.
11+ course content
The first term will emphasise the importance of wide reading in building strong vocabulary awareness, and will be supported by teaching and homework in proof-reading, grammar, punctuation and syntax, vocabulary expansion and comprehension. In later terms, tuition will develop and widen the children's understanding of mathematical and verbal and non-verbal reasoning.
Students work with similarly bright children in a convivial and supportive fast-track environment. We work hard but enjoy what we do here. Throughout the 11+ course, I will encourage students to learn to appreciate the rich rewards of developing a love of learning for its own sake in the long term, and not simply rehearsing techniques to pass a test. Along with a balanced curriculum, children will enjoy reading a rich and rewarding range of books through the course. Your child's motivation and understanding will develop rapidly through the committed and enthusiastic teaching of a qualified and experienced specialist teacher, within firm but fair, well-structured learning conditions.
What is my record of success?
Between 1997 and 2017, all but one of my students who attended a three-term or more preparatory course with me gained a place at a foundation grammar school.
I can provide evidence of my academic and teaching qualifications, along with verifiable evidence of my students' success rates in the 11+ tests.
Practical matters: fees and terms
Fees and terms & conditions for payment for individual and group tuition are fixed and are non-negotiable. Fees for 11+ group tuition are £17.50 per hour per child in a group of five students or fewer.
Please be aware that in providing a service of high-quality, mainly individual and small group tuition, I organise the teaching I undertake under clearly-defined terms and conditions and contracts with parents, which are reviewed and, subject to performance, can be renewed each term.
Therefore, the tuition that I provide is best suited to motivated, well-organised families for whom a balanced education and wider interests and the welfare of a child takes priority over parents' work commitments and wider family and social functions.