We help hundreds of students prepare for the selective school exam and one of the most common questions we get from parents is ‘When should I start preparing my child for the selective school test?’
There is really no correct answer to this question and it ultimately comes down to you and your child.
To help get a bit more clarity I ask these 3 questions:
1. How badly do you want them to get in to a selective school?
Selective school entry is fiercely competitive and we help students as young as third grade prepare for the exam. For many parents, selective school is the only option – and so they want to begin as early as possible to ensure they secure a place. For others, it isn’t a big deal and they have back up options – so preparation is a lot less important. You need to ask yourself how important it is to you that they get in to a selective high school – and if it is very important you need to start ASAP.
2. What does your budget allow?
A good preparation program with an experienced tutor is really a requirement these days. If you let your child just do it on their own they will be significantly disadvantaged come exam time. Many parents say they want their child to get in on natural ability which is totally admirable, however they will be competing against thousands of other students that work with a tutor a number of times a week for months or even years in advance.
This will naturally cost money, so you need to decide on the investment you are willing to make. Many parents view selective schools as an alternative to private schools – and when you view it like this, budgeting for a tutor for 12 months or more is still a fraction of the price you will pay at private school.
3. How much can your child handle at this time?
The selective school test is designed to discriminate heavily against even the brightest of students. If your child is not in the top 10% of their class, they are going to be running an uphill battle towards selective school entry. I am not at all saying it can’t be done if they are outside the 10%, but it will be a lot of work and they will need to start well in advance.
You also need to consider all the other things your child does during the week; sports, music, playtime and regular school homework. Selective school test preparation will have to eat in to something, so you need to ensure your child has the capacity and ability to handle it.
Naturally the real answer to that question is as soon as possible – because the more preparation they put in, the more likely they are to succeed in the selective school test. It is a very difficult exam, and the students that are the most successful are those that have put in ample preparation and can walk in there with confidence and peace that they know what to do with every question they encounter.
We support students of all ages prepare for the selective school exam. If you are looking for an effective preparation program that has been tested and proven on thousands of students over 10 years please learn more and book your first lesson with an Alchemy tutor here.