GCSEs within a year; is it possible with Home Education?

(37 Posts)
KatyMac Wed 29-May-13 17:51:41

DD is reasonably bright and part way through English (x2), Maths & Science (x2)

If she left school at the end of year 10 - what would be the chances of her doing 5 GCSEs in an academic year (or maybe July to May)?

Mewhoiam Thu 30-May-13 07:28:32

I dont really want to sound judgmental, but why do they have to do them in a year? why do they have to do them at all? Have you asked your daughter if she even wants to do GCSE? It is an awful lot of pressure to put her under, and to ask her to put herself under. you know your child and she knows herself what she is capable of.

I understand if she is not doing well in school, or you feel she will revise/learn better in her home environment, but there is no time constraint on GCSE's or Alevels so talk about it with her and see what she actually wants to do. then make a plan smile

KatyMac Thu 30-May-13 07:41:00

Because she wants to go away to dance college at 16 & I need her to have to basics behind her - while she does what she wants to

At school she will do 5 GCSEs & 2 BTECs

TBH flexi-schooling would be best

FionaJNicholson Thu 30-May-13 07:49:05

They can't usually do (or finish) GCSEs out of school because of the controlled assessment in most subjects. Once they are out of school they become external candidates. So they tend to have to do IGCSEs instead, which means ditching the work they've banked for GCSEs as internal candidates.

It is possible to get 5 exams in a year through private study, but it depends on how much willpower your daughter has. (I gather there are some people who need to be made to do things, where this approach probably wouldn't work)

I have FAQ on my website about exams for home educators which cover this type of topic. My website is called edyourself but I'm not allowed to post the link as this would be shameless self promotion apparently.

KatyMac Thu 30-May-13 07:54:21

Oh nice to talk to you Fiona - it was you that crushed my dreams of Flexi-Schooling on a recent thread wink

She is pretty self disciplined - she has to be for her 'other' education......

Shameless self-promotion is good in my opinion....mind you I'm self-employed so I would say that

I just assumed she would have to dump what she had done - but if you look on that other thread next year is going to be complicated

doublecakeplease Thu 30-May-13 07:59:25

Not read your other thread. Does she really have to come out of school?
i teach one subject on a 1 year (5 GCSE) course and it's intense with subject specialist staff. Who would be doing the teaching?

FionaJNicholson Thu 30-May-13 07:59:29

My private (obviously not so private since on public Mumsnet thread) is that a heck of a lot of time is wasted in school and that a self-motivated individual could sort it out much more efficiently. That's why I did Oxbridge entrance myself.

FionaJNicholson Thu 30-May-13 08:02:09

*doublecakeplease" are you saying that it's not viable to study for exams without a teacher?

groups.yahoo.com/group/HE-Exams-GCSE-A_AS_Levels-OU-Others/ is the exams support list run by and for home educating parents

KatyMac Thu 30-May-13 08:08:03

Probably my Dad

She has a lot of the basics in English & Maths, Science would be my worry

Time is wasted at school 2.5 hours for afternoon registration & form, 2 hours PE, 3 hrs (a fortnight) Citizenship & Ethics, then for DD 2x5.5hrs BTECs that really aren't necessary

KatyMac Thu 30-May-13 08:09:40

She does this outside of school
Monday 30 minutes singing 2 hours Ballet (1 hr travelling)
Tuesday 1 hr 45 Ballet (1.5 hrs travelling)
Wednesday 2 hr 15 Ballet, Tap & Jazz (2 hrs travelling)
Thursday 1.5 hrs choir 1 hr Modern & 2 hrs drumming (1.5 hrs travelling)
Friday 2.5 hrs Ballet Tap & Jazz (1.5 hrs travelling)
Saturday 1 hr Ballroom & Latin, 30 min singing(2 hrs travelling)
Sunday 4 hrs Ballet contemporary & Jazz (7.5 hrs travelling)

She wants to increase the Friday night & Saturday & spend from midday Friday to Sunday evening in London training.....this makes school tricky

doublecakeplease Thu 30-May-13 08:15:19

Fiona - not sure where, in my very short post, you have derived that from. I take it that this is your 'thing' but that doesn't mean it's right for everyone.

Mn is a forum which allows input from others - input which helps in the ''mulling it over' process. The op is considering this as an option so i asked if anyone was going to be teaching her daughter. My thoughts were on science too - not easy (although not impossible) to learn from a textbook.

KatyMac Thu 30-May-13 08:16:58

She is doing double science and has covered a fair bit already the problem would be changing board/exam I guess & recovering the information she's done in the new way & doing the stuff she hasn't

HSMMaCM Thu 30-May-13 08:27:39

Would the school let her leave Friday lunchtime, as it's a vocational activity. Would they mark her assessments and let her sit the exams (for a small fee). If not, you might be looking at igcse. It's definitely possible in a year, but you will have to work out how. Maybe she could do a couple in jan and the rest in the summer? There are correspondence courses she could do.

Good luck.

FionaJNicholson Thu 30-May-13 08:40:58

sorry doublecakeplease you are quite right I did jump to the conclusion when you asked "who will be doing the teaching" that you thought there would have to be a teacher.

doublecakeplease Thu 30-May-13 09:30:14

You don't need to be a teacher to educate. I've got a few students who were home schooled to a decent standard BUT they are often lacking in science based subjects.

KatyMac Thu 30-May-13 09:48:00

My dad is an engineer and has strong practical science based knowledge (all three) - so he would be capable but practicals worry him

doublecakeplease Thu 30-May-13 09:51:29

Could you get a tutor for subjects you're concerned about? Even someone to sit with your Dad and guide him before you start?

GCSEs are going linear next year (exams at the end rather than modular) so there's mixed guidance around at the minute too

KatyMac Thu 30-May-13 16:33:12

Maybe - I'm fairly sure my dad would cope

He lectures quite a bit in his own field

KatyMac Thu 30-May-13 16:34:17

Other things to consider are what HSMM suggested & the possibility of doing the 5 GCSEs at college (but I imagine that would be quite time intensive)

HSMMaCM Thu 30-May-13 19:15:39

Correspondence might be better than regular college attendance, which would probably clash in the evenings. DD did dance in a year after approx 25 hrs of lessons.

If she is motivated and bright, I don't see any reason why she shouldn't be able to self-study for 5 IGCSEs in a year. The time can be used far more productively when there is no travelling or "admin" involved. With IGCSE science the practical assessment is replaced by an additional short exam paper, so the practical part of it isn't necessarily a problem.

It depends what you and she are after really - can I assume you are focussed on the fact that she would be better off having 5 decent GCSEs before leaving school, as a fallback to her dancing ambitions?

We were in a similar situation with DS and music - in his case he could spend 2 years at an online school to get a "standard" set of qualifications, which I felt was important no matter what else he wanted to spend time on. It's not strictly necessary for HE, but I do think it is convenient to have them.

Would she be able to study while travelling? And/or while in London - am I right in thinking she is staying with family, so she'd hopefully have a decent environment to be able to get down to studying if she wanted to.

musicposy Thu 30-May-13 21:20:13

Yes easy, but you'd have to start IGCSE courses anew. I'm on DD2 now with IGCSEs after having put DD1 through 10 over 3 years. We've always started them in the September and taken them in May/June, and this year I've done that with a 13 year old, so a bright, motivated 15 year old would be fine.
You have some background research to do and an exam centre to find pretty fast, though! But you have time.

KatyMac Thu 30-May-13 22:06:48

We have a bit of a hiccup

DD says no way - she loves school; which I have to say is great, mainly because I hated it wink

But I'm worried about downtime just now - I don't know. I suppose we should just keep talking about stuff & maybe approach the school about flexi

exoticfruits Thu 30-May-13 22:19:23

I wouldn't call it a hiccup- she is the one going and she says 'no way'.She is old enough to listen to. Has she said that she wants flexi time? It makes it very difficult for friendships.

Millais Thu 30-May-13 22:29:46

When will she know if she has been accepted at the college? Will she need academic qualifications to get in there? I know a girl who is now 16 and has a number of GCSEs and A levels already and these were all done on her own whilst she was in West End productions but she is incredibly driven and talented. She knows she wants to go to UNi so needs them to get in. If your DD knows she needs her GCSEs she might manage all of the after school activities and the study.
Will she be dropping some of the activities when she is at college- I guess she won't be studying them all there

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