Luxury Cheshire tries out the 11+ Education Assessment and Consultation Service offered by Peak Tuition.
Winter is crunch time when comes to independent senior school choices, with entrance examinations looming and some schools also requiring a separate assessment day to complement the process.
See our list of Cheshire and Manchester independent senior school admissions dates here >
It is important to choose the school that best suits your child, and for neither parents nor children to mistakenly set their sights on a school that is unsuitable. Choosing the best school for your child in facilitated by having an independent and accurate assessment of your child’s academic abilities. It also requires an insight into the culture of a school.
Insider knowledge is a huge bonus here, and that is what Daniel Coward of Peak Tuition provides.
Peak Tuition offers expert tutoring for children at all stages of their education. Head Tutor, Daniel has up-to-date and encyclopaedic knowledge of the Cheshire area’s top independent schools, the culture and ethos of each as well as the requirements of the all-important entrance exams.
And in addition, to help prospective families pinpoint their choices, Peak Tuition offers an in-depth assessment for children, with recommendations contained in a full, written report for parents.
We trialled the assessment and consultancy service to see how it could help us understand our child’s strengths and weaknesses and then going forward, focus attention on any areas that need improvement.
Maths assessment (45 minutes) – A maths paper of graduated difficulty. Children attempt as much as they can in the time given. Five errors in a row and the marking stops. This test offers a gauge of academic potential, regardless of age, giving a percentile ranking.
Reading and comprehension age test – This test is carried out using the Salford Sentence Reading Test (SSRT). It comprises a group of sentences taken out of context, which present increasing difficulty. Each sentence also tests literal and inference comprehension. Results from this test include reading age, comprehension age and percentile ranking.
Creative writing – 20 minute test of writing ability.
The assessment takes place in a quiet room at home, where the tutor can observe the child working through the questions. Mum or Dad can be present as a silent observer, if this is preferred.
Daniel’s calm and professional manner quickly puts both mother and nervous ten-year old at ease as the tests are completed. Results were available a few days later, and we met with Daniel to discuss in detail his findings and recommendations.
As well as specific advice for the child in question, Daniel also imparted much in the way of general 11+ entrance exam wisdom. This included suggestions for how, as parents, we can best support our child’s learning at home.
One of these gems of advice is about how to approach taking past papers, which most schools make readily available. Rather than subjecting your child to endless past papers, instead it is better to have them try one paper and study it more thoroughly, picking the questions apart and learning how to tackle them effectively. This way, you can uncover and address any weaknesses. It also enables you to baseline current ability and able to see progress. Parent and child can then see realistic, incremental improvements, and confidence also goes up.
The written report contains a useful summary of the test work completed, with scores for each test and the percentile ranking for your child against national averages.
What does the service cost?
We were given a bespoke package which suited our requirements but the following costs can be a guide:
- Academic assessment: £230
- 1-hr Consultation: £115 (advice regarding school options).
- Annual client fee: £150
Potential clients should expect to invest at least £495 for a similar one-off service. Note that due to demand, waiting times can be significant and, depending on the time of year, could be as long as 6 months.
Tel: (01625) 330 505
Peak Tuition also offers a Summer Club for children in Year 4 & 5. The club is an opportunity for bright children who intend to sit 11+ exams to come together and be challenged while having a fun. Read more on the website >