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Standardisation of the STT

B Darcy made this Freedom of Information request to Buckinghamshire Council Automatic anti-spam measures are in place for this older request. Please let us know if a further response is expected or if you are having trouble responding.

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Dear Buckinghamshire Council,

Dear The Buckinghamshire Grammar Schools,

Please can you provide details regarding your procedure for standardising process.

According to the Buckinghamshire Council Website:

GL Assessment mark the Secondary Transfer Test papers. The marks are then ‘standardised'. Standardisation balances the overall performance of children from one year to the next. It also makes sure that all children are placed on an equal footing and that no child is unfairly advantaged or disadvantaged because of his or her age. It takes into account each child's age in years and months on the date they take the test. A child's ‘standardised score' will be between 0 and 180+.

I understand from this that scores are standardised for age 'so that all children are placed on an equal footing and that no child is unfairly advantaged or disadvantaged because of his or her age'.

I note that children from partner schools (private fee paying schools) also sit the exact same test. Has there been any consideration for standardising the fact that these children are unfairly advantaged due to significantly smaller class sizes?

Many of the partner schools openly advertise on their websites and social media channels how 'successful' their children are passing the STT and use this to market their schools. Some go as far as ensuring they are not a test centre so that they can 'prepare' their children for the test.

Clearly these children are not on an 'equal footing' and those from non fee paying schools are being disadvantaged. If age is a factor, so is class size and the schools preparation for a test that is not meant to be prepared for- something the state schools follow rigidly.

Data from your website additionally reveals how partner schools are at a significant advantage of a positive outcome for a Selection Review or Appeal.

Please can you detail what steps are taken for an 'equal footing' for those children who are disadvantaged against those who attend partner (private) fee paying schools.

Yours faithfully,

B Darcy

Information request
Our reference: 5400481

══════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════

Dear B Darcy
 
Thank you for your request for information that was received on 11
December 2023.
 
Your request was:
Please can you provide details regarding your procedure for standardising
process.

According to the Buckinghamshire Council Website:

GL Assessment mark the Secondary Transfer Test papers. The marks are then
'standardised'. Standardisation balances the overall performance of
children from one year to the next. It also makes sure that all children
are placed on an equal footing and that no child is unfairly advantaged or
disadvantaged because of his or her age. It takes into account each
child's age in years and months on the date they take the test. A child's
'standardised score' will be between 0 and 180+.

I understand from this that scores are standardised for age 'so that all
children are placed on an equal footing and that no child is unfairly
advantaged or disadvantaged because of his or her age'.

I note that children from partner schools (private fee paying schools)
also sit the exact same test. Has there been any consideration for
standardising the fact that these children are unfairly advantaged due to
significantly smaller class sizes?

Many of the partner schools openly advertise on their websites and social
media channels how 'successful' their children are passing the STT and use
this to market their schools. Some go as far as ensuring they are not a
test centre so that they can 'prepare' their children for the test.

Clearly these children are not on an 'equal footing' and those from non
fee paying schools are being disadvantaged. If age is a factor, so is
class size and the schools preparation for a test that is not meant to be
prepared for- something the state schools follow rigidly.

Data from your website additionally reveals how partner schools are at a
significant advantage of a positive outcome for a Selection Review or
Appeal.

Please can you detail what steps are taken for an 'equal footing' for
those children who are disadvantaged against those who attend partner
(private) fee paying schools.
 
We will handle your request under the most appropriate legislation.
 
You can expect to receive a response by 11 January 2024.
 
The Council will be in touch if we need any further information. 
 
Yours sincerely
 
Information Management Team
[Buckinghamshire Council request email]
 
 
NOTE: Please do not edit the subject line when replying to this email.
 

DISCLAIMER FOR BUCKINGHAMSHIRE COUNCIL

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are not necessarily those of Buckinghamshire Council unless explicitly
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monitoring will take place in accordance with relevant legislation
including privacy and data protection legislation. For details of how
Buckinghamshire Council uses personal information please see the Council's
website.

Buckinghamshire Council has scanned this email and attachments for viruses
but does not accept any responsibilities for viruses once this email has
been transmitted. You should therefore carry out your own anti-virus
checks before opening any documents.

1 Attachment

Information request
Our reference: 5400481

══════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════

Dear B Darcy
 
Thank you for your request for information received on 11 December 2023.
 
Please find attached our response to your request.
 
Kind Regards
 
The Information Governance Team

 

 
NOTE: Please do not edit the subject line when replying to this email.
 

DISCLAIMER FOR BUCKINGHAMSHIRE COUNCIL

Any views expressed in this email are those of the individual sender and
are not necessarily those of Buckinghamshire Council unless explicitly
stated.

This email and any attachments may contain confidential or privileged
information and is intended solely for the use of the individual or entity
to whom it is addressed. Any confidential, sensitive or protectively
marked material must be handled accordingly.

If you are not the intended recipient you must not disclose, distribute,
copy, print or rely on any of the information contained in the email or
attachments, and all copies must be deleted immediately. If you do receive
this email in error please notify the sender immediately and note that
confidentiality or privilege is not waived or lost. 

Buckinghamshire Council may monitor the contents of emails sent and
received via its network for the purposes of ensuring compliance with
relevant legislation and the Council's policies and procedures. All such
monitoring will take place in accordance with relevant legislation
including privacy and data protection legislation. For details of how
Buckinghamshire Council uses personal information please see the Council's
website.

Buckinghamshire Council has scanned this email and attachments for viruses
but does not accept any responsibilities for viruses once this email has
been transmitted. You should therefore carry out your own anti-virus
checks before opening any documents.

Dear Buckinghamshire Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Buckinghamshire Council's handling of my FOI request 'Standardisation of the STT'.

Instead of answering my query the Council has referred to the same request made to The Bucks Grammar Schools. This raises serious concerns. The Department of Education at the Council should be raising my query with The Bucks Grammar School not simply passing it on. Buckinghamshire Council has a responsibility to those children within and outwith Buckinghamshire that a fair process is in place for the Secondary Transfer Test.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/s...

Yours faithfully,

B Darcy

Information request
Our reference: 5400481

══════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════

Hi
 
Thank you for your request for a review received on 5 February 2024. I am
sorry that you are dissatisfied with our attempts to handle your request
under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
 
I can confirm that we are considering your concerns and we will aim to
provide you with a response by 4 March 2024.
 
Kind Regards
 
 
Francisca Harpur

Senior Information Governance Officer

 
NOTE: Please do not edit the subject line when replying to this email.
 

DISCLAIMER FOR BUCKINGHAMSHIRE COUNCIL

Any views expressed in this email are those of the individual sender and
are not necessarily those of Buckinghamshire Council unless explicitly
stated.

This email and any attachments may contain confidential or privileged
information and is intended solely for the use of the individual or entity
to whom it is addressed. Any confidential, sensitive or protectively
marked material must be handled accordingly.

If you are not the intended recipient you must not disclose, distribute,
copy, print or rely on any of the information contained in the email or
attachments, and all copies must be deleted immediately. If you do receive
this email in error please notify the sender immediately and note that
confidentiality or privilege is not waived or lost. 

Buckinghamshire Council may monitor the contents of emails sent and
received via its network for the purposes of ensuring compliance with
relevant legislation and the Council's policies and procedures. All such
monitoring will take place in accordance with relevant legislation
including privacy and data protection legislation. For details of how
Buckinghamshire Council uses personal information please see the Council's
website.

Buckinghamshire Council has scanned this email and attachments for viruses
but does not accept any responsibilities for viruses once this email has
been transmitted. You should therefore carry out your own anti-virus
checks before opening any documents.

1 Attachment

Information request
Our reference: 5400481

══════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════════

Dear B Darcy
 
Please find attached the response to your request for an Internal Review.
Kind Regards
 
 
Francisca Harpur

Senior Information Governance Officer

 

enc

 

DISCLAIMER FOR BUCKINGHAMSHIRE COUNCIL

Any views expressed in this email are those of the individual sender and
are not necessarily those of Buckinghamshire Council unless explicitly
stated.

This email and any attachments may contain confidential or privileged
information and is intended solely for the use of the individual or entity
to whom it is addressed. Any confidential, sensitive or protectively
marked material must be handled accordingly.

If you are not the intended recipient you must not disclose, distribute,
copy, print or rely on any of the information contained in the email or
attachments, and all copies must be deleted immediately. If you do receive
this email in error please notify the sender immediately and note that
confidentiality or privilege is not waived or lost. 

Buckinghamshire Council may monitor the contents of emails sent and
received via its network for the purposes of ensuring compliance with
relevant legislation and the Council's policies and procedures. All such
monitoring will take place in accordance with relevant legislation
including privacy and data protection legislation. For details of how
Buckinghamshire Council uses personal information please see the Council's
website.

Buckinghamshire Council has scanned this email and attachments for viruses
but does not accept any responsibilities for viruses once this email has
been transmitted. You should therefore carry out your own anti-virus
checks before opening any documents.

We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are B Darcy please sign in and let everyone know.