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Assessing Out


ZooZoo
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My son is in year 5 at the moment and I am thinking of seeing if he would like to audition for vocational schools. Please can anyone with knowledge tell me, at either White Lodge or Elmhurst, how many pupils there are each year and how many are assessed out each year? If you get into White Lodge/Elmhurst, are you basically lucky to make it all the way to year 11 or unlucky to be assessed out? I don't really want him to go somewhere like this if there is a high chance he won't make it through to year 11........

 

I would also be interested in the same information for Tring/Hammond, again if anyone knows please. It may take me a while to check back onto here, but I will appreciate your responses.....

Thanks

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Hi Susyszoo

 

Someone with a younger child will probably be able to fill you in better on the number of students in each year, but I think it's up to 12 boys and 12 girls (ish) in each year at WL, and a few more at Elmhurst.

 

As for how many get assessed out - Elmhurst don't ask anyone to leave until the end of year 9, although some students might choose to leave if they get an "unsatisfactory" assessment. In year 9, it does vary of course, but there might be approx 4 or more students who leave.

 

At WL - years ago they rarely assessed out of year 7, but in the last few years there have often been one or two students from year 7, then you might get one or two from year 8 and perhaps 4 or so from year 9. But of course, this varies each year as it is purely down to the students in any particular year.

 

So you can see that the majority who enter at year 7, do make it through to year 11, but by no means all.

 

Having said that, my son was assessed out of year 9 (fortunately then got a place at Elmhurst for year 10) and horrible though that was at the time, I'm glad he went to WL - I wouldn't change those 3 years for anything.

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Agree with everything Julie said. The year my DS was in at W / L had quite a number assessed out of it though only 2 boys mine being one of them. Only half of the girls who started in year 7 made it to year 11. We also had a girl assessed out of year 7. I always half expected him to be assessed out as he went in from the waiting list, so he was the last selected.

 

He had a wonderful 3 years at W / L and Iots of wonderful experiences. He also got a place at Elmhurst where he has been even happier once he settled in. I have occasionally wondered if we made the right choice in accepting the place at W / L as he has done so well at Elmhurst.

 

When he was assessed out he took it in his stride, and carried on as normal, there were 5 from his year assessed out that year. I didn't take it quite so well. It was very stressful but it has all worked out well in the end. He just now needs to get a job next year!

 

At Tring I don't think they assess out but withdraw funding if they are on MDS funding we do know of one that happened to.

 

If we didn't apply or take a place just in case our DC are assessed out, they could miss the opportunities the schools offer or even making it through to year 11 without a problem. The schools are very clear about assessment so you know it could be a possibility but at the end of the day it only effects a small number of students.

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The Hammond has changed its approach to assessing out in the last year. We had a letter last year saying that students can be assessed out in any year if they feel that sufficient progress is not being made or if the student's attitude and dedication is not good. Whilst it can be any year, year 9 is the key year. We have just had another letter saying that assessments will take place in November and telling us what they are looking at.

 

My daughter is in year 9, and some of her friends are getting themselves very worried about it. I personally don't think it will happen in anything other than exceptional circumstances. We'll have to wait and see!

 

Auditioning/not getting into 6th form is obviously quite separate.

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thanks for the replies so far. So is it basically just year 9 that they are assessed out? In other words, if they make it through to year 10 are they safe for year 11? I really appreciate the responses. I suppose I would be ok with the thought that a third might be assessed out at year 9, but not with the thought that most accepted in year 7 would not make it through. I don't think it would be fair to my son to put him in a situation where he could be assessed out at any time.......but I guess the decision would be his!

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Suzyszoo, as I understand it, in year 11 the students at all the schools have to audition for the upper schools and at that point it becomes really competitive because many overseas students are also applying for upper school places.

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Once in year 10 you may not pass your apprasial but you aren't asked to leave due to being in the middle of your GCSE's.

 

As mentioned in the previous post auditioning for 6th form/upper schools there is more competition with overseas students applying but then there are also more schools available so more places available. If you don't go to vocational school you need to get good training locally to keep up the standard. For a girl that is quite often possible but good male training isn't so easy to find which makes vocational school so tempting.

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One of the reasons I was so against my DS going to White Lodge was precisely the fear of being assessed out.

 

I wish I'd known at the time that actually being assessed out isn't the end of the road, just the start of a new one- I don't know of anyone who was assessed out who didn't then get into another vocational school that actually suited them better. I do know of some who decided not to continue with vocational training but this was their choice.I asked a WL teacher about the assessing out procedure before DS started and was told that they(the assessed out students) didn't have problems going elsewhere as they were still amongst the best of their age.

 

My son actually survived the 5 years although we did get one cause for concern letter. I am so glad that I didn't let my concerns stop him from going as he was very happy there and it was the right place for him.

 

As others have said, once you get to year 10,you are safe for two years.

 

Then everyone has to start again with auditions fr 6th form!

Edited by hfbrew
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Incidently, out of the 12 boys who started at WL in my sons year only 2 have stopped dancing altogether, 2 were still training last I heard and the rest all have jobs. So pretty good odds.

 

The journeys were all different but the end result was the same!

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Further to the Hammond assessing out comments:

 

This is a fairly new thing for everyone at the school but a couple of children have had their MDS's taken away in year 10 which left their families unable to pay the fees and thus had to remove their child. I am unable to offer any further comments on these children.

 

A letter offering any sort of awards (MDS or Bursary) carries the warning that these can be taken away from the child for a variety of reasons at any point over the child's time in the school, althogh obviously in consultation with the parents.

 

Hammond and possibly Tring are unique in the fact that there are other forms of dance opportunities to hand, so a change of dance/musical theatre direction whilst still staying at the school are possibilities.

 

Hope this helps.

 

T

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Absolutely Taxi. That's actually quite hard to deal with (whichever year it happens in) as there's a slight feeling (whether it's right or wrong) of someone coming in to replace someone who has been assessed out. The new students and their parents will be excited about their wonderful news, but there's someone else who is possibly devastated by their news.

 

We've discussed all this before - I'll see if I can find the previous thread and post the link.

 

Edited to add link: http://www.balletcoforum.com/index.php?/topic/227-assessmentappraisal-results/page__p__2321__hl__assess#entry2321

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This is a very stressfull time for all concerned! It is really good to see from the postings that children who were accessed out were able to turn this into a positive experience, not only must they have been very talented but had the inner strength to keep on going and significant support from parents.

But I known from personal experience of children that have left vocational school for various reasons (including injury) that have unfortunately drifted into various lesser ways of life. So its very important to understand at the start of any journey through vocational school that loosing their place may happen.

One of the strengths of the children is usually their focus, the majority of the time this is good as they strive for that future ballet career, but I do think it is healthy to try and have other interests that they can fall back onto if the unfortunate thing happens. This was something that I encouraged my DS to do in case things went wrong, but fortunately they didn't. Nurturing other interests now makes sense anyway, as dancers careers are shorted lived, so there will come a point when they will need to move onto other things in the future.

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In some of the schools there is better availability of beds as you move up through the years, so a place offered in year 10 is not necessarily because someone has been assessed out. In my eldest daughter's year, when they moved into year 9 three extra girls arrived in September. We have seen other reasons for children leaving other than being assessed out. One girl left after a few weeks because she decided she didn't want to follow the vocational route, another left after a year as she didn't want to board. A different girl had moved to the Uk from abroad, then the family went abroad again. As theThirdMan says, children to get injuries and then don't continue with vocational training.

 

That all said, there are very few places available for year 10 in any of the schools.

 

NL

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