Within NSW, there are 17 fully selective schools available to qualifying students; however, the competition is fierce – out of the 13,500 students that sit the annual test, only about 4,000 are accepted*.
Between March and June 2014, year 6 students across NSW will be sitting their tests to determine their eligibility for selective high schools. These tests – made up of three multiple-choice tests (English, Mathematics and General Ability) and a writing task – award a total score out of three hundred based on the student’s performance. To determine student eligibility, each of the selective schools uses a cut-off mark out of this score.
The highest of these is James Ruse Agricultural High School with a cut-off of 245/300, while the lowest is Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School with 145/300. Within the regional zone of Global Education Academy (GEA), there are three selective schools: St George Girls High School (with a cut-off of 204), Sydney Technical High School (196) and Caringbah High (195). The students wishing to be accepted into these selective schools need more than just aptitude ability, they also require the ability to keep a cool head under exam pressure!
Most students undergoing these tests do utilise a tutor; however, many tutors rely on rote learning, bombarding the student with hundreds of questions and hoping it sinks in. This method is often counterproductive, as it creates ‘tutor-dependent’ students who struggle to maintain any momentum once at a selective school. Conversely, GEA students are given the skills required to understand and learn independently. GEA doesn’t just teach a student how to ace a single test, we create lifelong problem-solvers!
GEA’s ‘Selective School Placement Test Preparation Course’ is designed exclusively for year 5 students who will be sitting the test early 2015 in year 6. This 41-week course begins at the onset of term two each year (this year it begins on 29/4/2014) and comprehensively prepares students for selective school. The program focuses on the four core components of the selective school test – Mathematics, English, Writing and General Ability – and each subject is taught for one-hour per week.
Our program is designed to impart conceptual understanding, enabling students to master higher-order thinking skills (the skills most required in the selective test). Our students are empowered with a deep understanding of concepts and strategies, enabling them to cope with the pressure of selective school on going not just the entrance exam. We practice Cognitive Load Theory principles and believe that familiarity with the test is a key to success; therefore, we conduct several mock tests towards the end of the program so that students become familiar with the testing process in a stress-free environment.
After each term, parents receive a term report outlining their child’s progress, as well as frequent updates. Students receive regular support from Dr Majeda Awawdeh and our qualified team.
For more details on the program, please visit our selective school page.
* (based on 2012 data).