NI Grammar School Admission criteria for
September 2022
These details have been updated.

Admission criteria for grammar schools in Northern Ireland for entrance in September 2022 have changed.

In the autumn term of 2021-2022 school year the Transfer Test - either the AQE or GL (PPTC) version has was used as part of the admissions policy for entry into year 8 by many schools. However some schools decided not to use either the AQE or GL (PPTC) Transfer Test and so those schools have developed new admission criteria for entry into Year 8 in September 2022.

 
These Grammar School admission criteria can vary greatly from school to school and you should make yourself aware of all the criteria details as they will determine which children will be admitted to this school in September 2022.
 
Make sure that you provide the school with all the information that they require as the school will use the information that you provide when making their decision about which children are admitted in September 2022.
 

Larne Grammar School

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LARNE GRAMMAR SCHOOL

4-6 Lower Cairncastle Road

Larne BT40 1PQ

Telephone: 028 2827 2791

Fax No: 028 2827 5022

Email: info@larnegrammar.larne.ni.sch.uk

Website: www.larnegrammar.org.uk

Principal: Mr J Wylie BA PGCE MSc PQH (NI)

Chairperson of the Board of Governors: Mr R Logan BA MA DipEd DASE


Voluntary Grammar School (Non-Denominational)

Age Range of Pupils:   11-18

Admissions Number:     110

Enrolment Number:     735


Arrangements to visit. Open Nights: Please note that, in the light of Department of Education guidance to schools, Larne Grammar School will not be holding physical open days this academic year. Information on the school for potential applicants will be uploaded to the school website - www.larnegrammar.org.uk


To Parents/Guardians naming Larne Grammar School as a preference on your child’s online Transfer Application


Entrance Test Results

Please ensure that you provide the following information on your child’s online Transfer Application:


• your child’s score in the Association for Quality Education (“AQE”) Common Entrance Assessment (“CEA”) which should be entered, along with the AQE Candidate Number, in the appropriate section of the online Transfer Application. It is the responsibility of parents/guardians to make sure that the notification received from AQE indicating their child’s AQE CEA score is uploaded with the online Transfer Application.


Special Circumstances and/or Special Provisions

Parents/Guardians who wish to apply to the School under Special Circumstances and/or Special Provisions should complete Form SC22 obtainable from AQE or the School and upload it with appropriate documentation described in the section ‘Special Circumstances and Special Provisions’.

If you are making a claim for your child to be considered under Special Circumstances and/or Special Provisions, please note that you are required to:

• present all such material as you consider will assist the Board of Governors in determining if Special Circumstances and/or Special Provisions apply;

• upload all such material with the online Transfer Application.


Further details can be found in the Section ‘Special Circumstances and Special Provisions – General Information’ below.


FEES

The School charges an annual Capital Fee of £100 per pupil (pupils in receipt of free school meals are exempt from the Capital Fee and a sibling discount of £40 per child applies) and requests a Voluntary School Fund Contribution of £80 per pupil per year (subject to annual review).


A. ADMISSIONS CRITERIA FOR ENTRY OF PUPILS TO YEAR 8 (FORM 1) IN SEPTEMBER 2022

1 General

1.1 The Board of Governors delegates the selection of pupils for admission to the School Admissions Committee, consisting of at least three members of the Board of Governors, the Principal (or his appointed Deputy) and one other member of the School’s Senior Leadership Team.


1.2 The Board of Governors of the School will not use as a criterion the position of preference given to the School on the online Transfer Application, i.e. a child who has chosen Larne Grammar School in any position on the online Transfer Application will be considered equally with those who have put the School first.


1.3 It is the responsibility of parents/guardians to make sure that all relevant information is made available to the School either on or uploaded with the online Transfer Application. When considering which children should be selected for admission, the Board of Governors will only take into account information which is detailed on or uploaded with the online Transfer Application. Parents should therefore ensure that all information pertaining to their child and relevant to the school’s admissions criteria is stated on the online Transfer Application or uploaded with it. Parents should note that the information contained within an application that qualifies the child for admission will require to be verified. The provision of false or incorrect information or the failure to provide information within the deadlines as set by the School can result in the withdrawal of a place.


1.4 Where applicable, ‘sibling’ is defined as another ‘child of the family’ to include: a child born to a married couple or to a couple in a civil partnership; a child born to a co-habiting couple; a child born to a single parent; a child of either/any of those people by a previous marriage, civil partnership or relationship; a child living with a couple who has been treated as a ‘child of the family’ whether there is a marriage or a civil partnership or not; a child living with an individual, who has been treated as a ‘child of the family’; an adopted or fostered child; a situation where for example an orphaned cousin is being brought up with a family or individual.


2 If the School is over-subscribed, the following criteria for entry will apply, in the order stated:


2.1 The Board of Governors will consider children who are resident in Northern Ireland at the time of their proposed admission to the School before those who are not.


2.2 The Board of Governors will then consider children who have taken the Common Entrance Assessment (“CEA”) administered by the Association for Quality Education (“AQE”). The Board of Governors will use the ‘standardised score’ as awarded by AQE to a pupil in the CEA, subject only to the consideration of parent/guardian(s) claiming ‘Special Circumstances’ and/or ‘Special Provisions’ as defined below. Places will be allocated in strict rank order of the scores, starting with the highest score and working in descending rank order, up to the Admissions Number (110). The score in the AQE CEA should be entered, along with the AQE Candidate Number, in the appropriate section of the online Transfer Application. It is the responsibility of parents/guardians to make sure that the notification received from AQE indicating their child’s AQE CEA score is uploaded with the online Transfer Application.


2.3 If more than one child is eligible for the last remaining place(s) because they have equal scores, then the final place(s) will be allocated using the following criteria, in the order stated:

(i) children who have a sibling (‘child of the family’) currently enrolled or accepted for admission in the School [state name(s) and Tutor Group(s)] (see 1.4);

(ii) applicants will be ranked for acceptance on the basis of a computer-based process which will make use

of the names of applicants as shown on their Transfer Applications.

The process is carried out by means of a computer program which, for each applicant, generates a ranking number using the details from the online Transfer Application as the seed for a random number generator. The outcome, for any given applicant, is dependent only on the applicant’s name i.e. “Forename”, “Middlename” (if applicable) and “Surname”, as recorded on the online Transfer Application, and is not affected by the details of any other applicant. Although the process is repeatable, and the results may therefore be subsequently verified, it is not possible to predict, in advance of running the program, what the result will be for any given set of details. Applicants with the lowest ranking numbers will be given places up to the number of places available. Further details may be obtained from the Principal.


3. If there are still places available after consideration of all the children who have taken the AQE CEA and been awarded a standardised score by AQE, or awarded a score as a result of Special Circumstances and/or Special Provisions, the School Admissions Committee will consider for admission any children who have not taken the AQE CEA. These children will be allocated to the remaining places up to the School’s Admission Number using the criteria outlined above in 2.3 in the order set out.


Special Circumstances and Special Provisions – General Information

The purpose of a claim for Special Circumstances and/or Special Provisions is so that a child can be assigned a score equivalent to that which he or she would have obtained in the AQE CEA under normal conditions. Consideration of a claim for Special Circumstances and/or Special Provisions consists of two parts: the first requires the consideration of whether there is sufficient material to permit a child to be considered as having special circumstances or attracting special provisions, or both; if a child is permitted to be considered as having special circumstances or as attracting special provisions or both, the second part of the consideration requires an educational judgement to be made on the totality of the material presented to the School so that a mark equivalent to that which the child would have obtained in the AQE CEA under normal conditions can be awarded.


It is for parents/guardians to present all such material as they consider will assist the School in performing both parts of the consideration described above. All such material should be uploaded with the online Transfer Application. It should be noted by parents/guardians that both parts of the consideration referred to involve an exercise in judgement and not precise calculation.


Educational Evidence to be provided in support of a claim for Special Circumstances and/or Special Provisions.

In reaching the education judgement needed to award the mark that the child would have obtained in the AQE CEA under normal circumstances, the School Admissions Committee will consider any material presented (and uploaded with the online Transfer Application) by the parents/guardians. This material may include any or all of the following:


i) The standardised score awarded by AQE in the CEA (if the child sits two or three AQE CEAs) or the ‘raw score’ provided by AQE (if the child sits only one of the AQE CEAs, due to illness, self-isolation or other unforeseen circumstances);

ii) The results for the child of any standardised tests conducted in Year 5, Year 6 and Year 7 and the results in any end of year tests in English and Mathematics in Years 5 and 6;

iii) Comparative information from the Primary School, including the results, without names, for other children in the child’s Year 7 class of any standardised tests conducted in Year 5, Year 6 and Year 7 and the results in any end of year tests in English and Mathematics in Years 5 and 6 and where available the respective CEA scores;

iv) Any other relevant material.


SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES

The School has academic performance as its main criterion, subject only to the consideration of medical or other problems which may have affected performance in the AQE CEA and which are supported by documentary evidence of a medical or other appropriate nature. Such ‘medical or other problems’ are commonly referred to as ‘Special Circumstances’.


Please note: If a claim for the consideration of Special Circumstances is made in respect of matters for which Special Access arrangements were granted for a child, the School Admissions Committee will take into account the fact that the child was granted Special Access arrangements for those matters.


Parents/guardians who wish to apply to the School under Special Circumstances should complete Form SC22, obtainable from AQE or the School, stating the precise reason why they believe the child should be considered for Special Circumstances and upload it with appropriate evidence, with the online Transfer Application.


Details of Medical or other problems

Where it is claimed that a child’s performance in the AQE CEA has been affected by a medical or other problem, it is the responsibility of the parents/guardians to set out in Form SC22 the precise details of the problem and append evidence to corroborate its existence.


Where the problem is a medical one of short term duration which affected the child only at the time of the AQE CEA, parents/guardians should be aware that the School Admissions Committee will attach greater weight to evidence indicating that the child was examined by a medical practitioner in relation to the illness at the time of the assessments. For children who have tested positive for COVID-19, documentary evidence such as a positive PCR test result should be included.


Where the problem is of a non-medical nature, the parents/guardians should set out in the Form SC22 precise details of the problem and append any appropriate evidence.


The School Admissions Committee will consider the application for Special Circumstances. Where this is granted, the School Admissions Committee will determine, on the basis of the information available, an appropriate AQE CEA score for the child. Such children will then be considered with all the other children who have received an AQE CEA score and the admissions criteria applied.


SPECIAL PROVISIONS

Special Provisions will apply for:

a) children whose parents/guardians wish them to transfer from schools outside Northern Ireland;

b) children who have received more than half their primary education outside Northern Ireland;

c) children entered for the AQE CEA, who because of unforeseen and serious medical or other problems (including absence due to COVID-19 or the need to self-isolate due to COVID-19) which are supported by appropriate independent documentary evidence, were unable to participate in any of the assessments.


Note: It is expected that all those seeking admission should sit the AQE CEA, with the exception of children who took up residence in Northern Ireland after 24 September 2021.

Parents/guardians who wish to apply to the School under Special Provisions should complete Form SC22, obtainable from the School or from AQE, stating the precise reason why they believe the child is eligible for consideration under Special Provisions and attach it with appropriate evidence to the Transfer Application. Parents/Guardians who are applying for Special Provisions under category a) must do so by 4pm on 9 March 2022.


The School Admissions Committee will consider the application for Special Provisions. Where this is granted, the School Admissions Committee will determine, on the basis of the information available, an appropriate AQE CEA score for the child. Such children will then be considered with all other children who have received an AQE CEA score and the admissions criteria applied.


DUTY TO VERIFY

Parents/Guardians should note that the information contained within an application that qualifies the child for admission will be verified.


The Board of Governors, therefore, reserves the right to require such supplementary evidence as it may determine to support or verify information on any Transfer Application.

This information will be requested from successful children shortly after they have been notified of their allocation of a place at the School.


Parents should also note the provision of false information or incorrect information or the failure to provide verifying documents according to the required deadline may result in either the withdrawal of a place or the inability of the school to offer a place.


B. ADMISSIONS CRITERIA FOR ENTRY OF PUPILS TO YEAR 8 (FORM 1) FOLLOWING COMPLETION OF THE TRANSFER PROCEDURE


The school’s policy on the consideration of applications after the Transfer Procedure concludes towards the end of May 2022 is available directly from the school or can be accessed on the school website at www.larnegrammar.org.uk


Should a vacancy arise after the completion of the Transfer Procedure at the end of May 2022 all applications for admission to Year 8 that were initially refused, new applications, late applications and applications where new information has been provided will be treated equally and the published criteria applied. This waiting list will be in place until 30 June of the year following application.


The School will contact parents/guardians in writing if their child gains a place in the School by this method.


The names of all applicants will be automatically added to the list. Parents/guardians should contact the School if they wish for their child’s name to be removed from the list.


If the application is made by a child who arrived in Northern Ireland after the transfer process has been concluded and the School Admissions Committee determines that the child is suitable to be admitted, the School will then seek Department of Education approval to admit the child as an additional place. If such approval is given, the child will be admitted.


Number of Applications and Admissions


Year     2019/20

Admissions No.    110

Total Applications All Preferences     145

Total Admissions     110


Year     2020/21

Admissions No.     110

Total Applications All Preferences     113

Total Admissions     110


Year     2021/22

Admissions No.    110

Total Applications All Preferences     157

Total Admissions     110


This table does not include children who were admitted to the school with a statement of special educational needs.


ADMISSIONS CRITERIA FOR ENTRY OF PUPILS TO YEARS 9, 10, 11 OR 12 in 2022/23

APPLICATION PROCEDURE

The criteria for admitting pupils to Years 9-12 have been approved by the Board of Governors of Larne Grammar School.


The application of the admissions criteria for these year groups is delegated to a General Admissions Panel which comprises of the Principal, Vice Principal and an additional member of the Senior Team and/or one Teacher Governor.


The Board of Governors, through the General Admissions Panel, reserves the right to refuse an application even if a place becomes available, if they are of the opinion that the admission of the applicant would prejudice the efficient use of resources.

The closing date for applications is 4pm on the first Friday of June in the year of proposed entry.


Those wishing to apply for entry to Year 9 - Year 12 must make formal application each year using the School Application Form and provide the most recent reports from their present school. Full details, including the School Application Form, may be obtained by writing to the Principal's Secretary, Larne Grammar School, 4-6 Lower Cairncastle Road, Larne, BT40 1PQ or emailing info@larnegrammar.co.uk.


Following receipt of an application, the School will advise parents in writing, by the eleventh working day following the receipt of the School Application Form, of any decision to admit the child or otherwise. Pupils will be considered for admission and called to sit an assessment on the basis of any educational attainment evidence presented (and attached to the School Application Form) by the parents/guardians. This evidence should indicate academic attainment which is compatible with the demands and requirements made upon the year group they wish to enter. This material may include any or all of the following:

i) The score awarded by AQE in the CEA or the transfer grade awarded by GL;

ii) School reports indicating the results for the pupil of any standardised tests/examinations conducted in the last three years of Primary School and/or during Post-Primary Education;

iii) Any other relevant material.


If there are more applicants than places available in a particular year group a rank order will be created to determine the allocation of places. Places will be offered on the basis of the rank order (see Criteria 1 & 2), up to the total number of places available in both the Year Group and the School.

Where total number of applicants applying for places in all year groups (9-12) is likely to cause the total School enrolment figure to be exceeded, it is the role of the General Admissions Panel to determine which year groups shall have priority in the allocation of places.


In the event that a place subsequently becomes available, it should be noted that those who have applied previously, but have failed to obtain a place in the School, will be placed on a reserve list until 30 June 2023, at which time their application is deemed to have elapsed.


The Board of Governors has approved the criteria described below and has delegated the task of applying these criteria to the General Admissions Panel.


1 Criteria for admission for applicants

1.1 There MUST be places available in the year group being applied for, conditional upon places being available within classes to support appropriate subject choices and Department of Education guidelines regarding class size, subject to an overall enrolment number of 735.

1.2 If the number of applications is greater than can be admitted within the School Enrolment Number, or within a particular Year group, the following criteria will be applied in the order stated:

(i) pupils whose applications have been received before 4pm on the first Friday of June in the year of proposed entry will be considered before other children;

(ii) pupils whose most recent reports, or other educational evidence, from their present school (and previous schools, if applicable) satisfy the General Admissions Panel on past school record and achievement, including attendance, attitude, behaviour and punctuality, will be considered before other children. (A satisfactory attendance rate would be 90% or higher). In the case of pupils whose attendance may have been affected by clearly documented medical or other problems, the Admissions Panel is empowered, in extenuating circumstances, to consider this. Each case will be carefully assessed by the Admissions Panel and will necessarily take into account appropriate documentary evidence medical or otherwise. In such a case the decision of the Admissions Panel will be final.


Please note that it is the responsibility of parents/guardian to provide the School with all such educational evidence as they would wish the Admissions Panel to consider. Decisions by the Admissions Panel will be based only on the information provided to the School by parents/guardians;

(iii) pupils considered for admission following the application of Criteria 1.1, 1.2 (i) and 1.2 (ii) will be invited to attend the School to sit an online assessment.

Pupils will then be ranked on the basis of the results gained by the applicant in an online assessment conducted by the School.


2 If more than one child is eligible for the last remaining place(s) because they have equal scores, then the final place(s) will be allocated using the following criteria, in the order stated:


(i) children who have a sibling currently enrolled in the School [state name(s) and Tutor Group(s)]**;

** Where applicable, ‘sibling’ is defined as another ‘child of the family’ to include: a child born to a married couple or to a couple in a civil partnership; a child born to a co-habiting couple; a child born to a single parent; a child of either/any of those people by a previous marriage, civil partnership or relationship; a child living with a couple who has been treated as a ‘child of the family’ whether there is a marriage or a civil partnership or not; a child living with an individual, who has been treated as a ‘child of the family’; an adopted or fostered child; a situation where for example an orphaned cousin is being brought up with a family or individual.


(ii) applicants will be ranked for acceptance on the basis of a computer-based process which will make use of the names of applicants as shown on their School Application Form.

The process is carried out by means of a computer program which, for each applicant, generates a ranking number using the details from the School Application Form as the seed for a random number generator. The outcome, for any given applicant, is dependent only on the applicant’s name (as recorded on the School Application Form) and is not affected by the details of any other applicant. Although the process is repeatable, and the results may therefore be subsequently verified, it is not possible to predict, in advance of running the program, what the result will be for any given set of details. Applicants with the lowest ranking numbers will be given places up to the number of places available. Further details may be obtained from the Principal.


Should a vacancy arise following the 1st September in the year of proposed admission, all applicants for admission to Years 9-12 that were initially refused, new applications, late applications and applications where new information has been provided will be treated equally and the published criteria applied. This waiting list will be in place until 30 June of the year following application.

The School will contact parents/guardians in writing if their child gains a place in the School by this method.

The names of all applicants will be automatically added to the list. Parents/guardians should contact the School if they wish for their child’s name to be removed from the list.


THE VERIFICATION OF INFORMATION PROVIDED

Parents/Guardians should note that the information contained within an application that qualifies the child for admission may be verified.

The Board of Governors, therefore, reserves the right to require such supplementary evidence as it may determine to support or verify information on any School Application Form.

Parents should also note the provision of false information or incorrect information or the failure to provide verifying documents may result in either the withdrawal of a place or the inability of the School to offer a place.

** This information is provided for guidance only and while the content is, to the best of our knowledge, accurate we cannot be held in any way responsible for any errors or omissions that it may contain. Please contact your LA or chosen grammar school for all admission and Transfer Test queries.**