Why will DS1 be taking Statistics GCSE in year 10?

(25 Posts)
ShirleySmears Mon 13-Jul-15 12:09:43

Apparently all but the very bottom sets take it at DS1's secondary.

DS1 is in middle sets and struggles with maths. I can't help feeling it would be better to concentrate on getting that magic C in actual maths in year 11.

What are the benefits/reasons for taking statistics the year before?

Millymollymama Mon 13-Jul-15 13:18:45

I don't think there are any benefits because no-one much expects a student to have this qualification. As you say, they just want to see Maths at a good grade. My friend's DS's school does this and he got a B last year. He is taking Arts type subjects for A level so his Maths result in year 11 is far more important. He is worried about it so concentrating on just Maths in Y10 and Y11 might have been better for him. Therefore, I am with you: I don't understand it for middle ability children and I am pleased mine never took it. Great for the young people who like and need Maths. It seems to me like saying everyone should do 2 MFL when just French is a challenge. Schools still do odd things.

SecretSquirrels Mon 13-Jul-15 13:41:25

I agree with Millymolly.
In fact I don't see the benefit for more able maths students either. It's a dull GCSE and my DC would have been far better off doing some other additional maths or even computer science than statistics.
My DC did it in Y11 having done GCSE in Y10 which is even worse for those planning to do A level maths as they spend Y11 doing no proper maths.

ShirleySmears Mon 13-Jul-15 13:43:21

Oh dear, I was hoping you were all going to say there was loads of overlap (although couldn't really see how) and that doing the stats GCSE would be good prep for Maths the following year.

What is the benefit for the school then? There must a be reason they do it?

OhYouBadBadKitten Mon 13-Jul-15 21:17:09

I think that for current year 9s or younger, unless a school is able to table in addtional time for maths, to do stats as well is quite batty. The new maths gcse is harder and had a fair bit more content to squish in.

noblegiraffe Mon 13-Jul-15 21:23:08

We used to do it with our top 2 sets to fill in the time because GCSE wouldn't actually take them two years to cover. It wasn't a great course and the coursework was a pain in the arse to administer.

I can't imagine dragging middle set kids through it. What a pointless waste of time when, as you rightly say, they should be focusing on getting the best mark they can for GCSE.

camptownraces Mon 13-Jul-15 21:36:43

In my view Stats is a life skill and should be welcomed.

Why is it included? something to do with the timetable is my guess - is it being taught in Maths lessons, is it being taught by the same teacher?

It's amazing that most people here think that a basic understanding of Stats is a waste of time. (How much more does the new specification include, and is it useful?)

noblegiraffe Mon 13-Jul-15 21:45:06

GCSE Maths contains stats. It's not like they won't do any stats if they don't take the extra GCSE.

YeOldTrout Mon 13-Jul-15 21:46:26

gosh that sounds like an ambitious school, if only very bottom sets don't take it. Let me guess, the headline GCSE pass rate is quite high?

DS just took GCSE stats in yr10. It was half an option and only 25/160 kids in his cohort took it, he's moving onto As Calculus I think.
At DD's school only the very top sets did take it, but under the new math GCSE (score 1-9) they probably won't, like BadKitten is thinking, even basic GCsE is very challenging.

Husbanddoestheironing Mon 13-Jul-15 21:50:56

Very little stats in most GCSE maths courses, or certainly very little memorable stats. Bit soon to worry about stats in my view as you don't get to actually use it for anything useful until A level and even then it very much depends on what subjects you do. Result is that most students have forgotten it all by university and we have to teach it all again...

Essexmum69 Tue 14-Jul-15 06:37:06

DS1 took gcse stats alongside gcse maths in year 11. He is now taking AS maths and says it helped alot with S1, but for a DC unlikely to continue with Maths to A level it is probably unhelpful.

Noodledoodledoo Tue 14-Jul-15 07:27:42

The new GCSE starting this Septembervhas had a lot of the Stats content removed from the spec.

We are putting all students through Stats in year 10 with a seperate teacher to their normal one

From a students perspective it means they have an exam done and dusted early so have the experience of doing a proper exam, plus will help GCSE Maths as well. From schools point of view will get a grade in the bank for new measure Progress 8.

Namchang Tue 14-Jul-15 07:30:34

Noodle nails it. Progress 8 is the reason.

We're putting kids through the ecdl because it counts towards progress 8.

FurtherSupport Tue 14-Jul-15 08:04:45

Oh dear, another school thing I don't understand. What's progress 8?

scatterthenuns Tue 14-Jul-15 08:05:45

I did this in the 90s! Still don't know why.

SecretSquirrels Tue 14-Jul-15 09:20:16

Ah progress 8. It seems to me that it's just one more box to tick for the school's benefit but not necessarily the child. DC do far too many GCSEs already IMO.

DS1 is doing maths at uni. He did A level maths and Further Maths.
He would probably agree that stats GCSE was slightly helpful when doing the A level stats module, he reckoned they covered the entire GCSE content in the first 2 or 3 weeks of it so it would not be a disadvantage if you hadn't done stats before. Not all A level students do this module by the way.

Noodledoodledoo Tue 14-Jul-15 09:27:21

From September 2015 yr 10's the schools will be measured on students best 8 GCSE results. This is Progress 8. It is replacing 5 A*-C Inc English and Maths. Alongside EBAC qualifications ratings and English and Maths!

Yes it is a measure for school not students but unfortunately thanks to Mr Gove the hoops needed to jump through are not designed to benefit students. As schools are constantly compared on results they have to play the game sadly. A lot of teachers hate it but sadly OFSTED is keen to monitor such results and jump in when things change.

overthemill Tue 14-Jul-15 09:27:36

From guidance for schools: ie its for schools' benefit not students

A summary of Attainment 8 and Progress 8

Progress 8 aims to capture the progress a pupil makes from the end of primary school to the end of secondary school. It is a type of value added measure, which means that pupils’ results are compared to the actual achievements of other pupils with the same prior attainment.

The new performance measures are designed to encourage schools to offer a broad and balanced curriculum at key stage 4, and reward schools for the teaching of all their pupils, measuring performance across 8 qualifications. Every increase in every grade a pupil achieves will attract additional points in the performance tables.

Progress 8 will be calculated for individual pupils solely in order to calculate a school’s Progress 8 score, and there will be no need for schools to share individual Progress 8 scores with their pupils. Schools should continue to focus on which qualifications are most suitable for individual pupils, as the grades pupils achieve will help them reach their goals for the next stage of their education or training.

Attainment 8 will measure the average grade of a pupil across 8 subjects including mathematics (double weighted) and English (double weighted), 3 further qualifications that count in the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) measure and 3 further qualifications that can be GCSE qualifications (including EBacc subjects) or any other non-GCSE qualifications on the DfE approved list. The details of how qualifications are included in the measure are set out on pages 9-12 of this document.

The Attainment 8 and Progess 8 calculations are described on pages 13-19.

A Progress 8 score will be calculated for each pupil by comparing their average grade (their Attainment 8 score) with the average grade of all pupils nationally who had a similar starting point, or ‘prior attainment’, calculated using assessment results from the end of primary school. The greater the Progress 8 score, the greater the progress made by the pupil compared to the average of pupils with similar prior attainment. More information about the results used to calculate prior attainment is included on pages 16-17.

A school’s Progress 8 score will be calculated as the average of its pupils’ Progress 8 scores. It will give an indication of whether, as a group, pupils in the school made above or below average progress compared to similar pupils in other schools.

We have provided schools with Attainment 8 and Progress 8 data based on 2014 results to help them plan for the implementation of Progress 8 and to decide whether to opt in early for 2015 results. We are not publishing this information as it reflects curriculum decisions that schools made before Progress 8 was announced and we do not want schools to be judged on a measure which they were not aware of when pupils started their courses.

Happy36 Tue 14-Jul-15 14:16:30

Agree with all of the posts above.

I'd also add that perhaps achieving this IGCSE will help your child and their peers to feel more confident in themselves, specifically, in their numerical abilities.

Furthermore, it might help them to see Maths. from a practical, applicable point of view? And it could be more fun than Maths., thereby encouraging them to enjoy mathematical subjects?

OhYouBadBadKitten Tue 14-Jul-15 14:50:09

fun? We have different concepts of fun. It's as dull as dishwater!

SecretSquirrels Tue 14-Jul-15 16:32:25

None of the DC I know who took stats GCSE, (not IGCSE which may be different) enjoyed it.
Even those like DS1 who love maths loathed stats. He was dreading it at A level but found the A level module much more interesting.

Millymollymama Tue 14-Jul-15 18:01:14

I still cannot see how "average" pupils taking Stats GCSE early will improve the Progress 8. For the better Maths students who might score less well on another subject then it might be OK. It is still better for the middle and lower attainers to concentrate on Maths, without anythinge else they do not need, let alone taking Stats a year early which could easily result in a lower grade anyway.

Noodledoodledoo Tue 14-Jul-15 21:19:30

The average student may be able to get a C in Stats when they can't get it in another subject say History/French etc so Stats can replace a poorer subject.

I will just say I do enjoy Stats and most of my students do as well - it can be dull but with any subject its how it's done and delivered.

Seeing the application of maths for some can inspire them.

noblegiraffe Tue 14-Jul-15 21:22:40

If the time taken to do stats is taken out of maths time, that's nonsensical in terms of progress 8, because their maths result is double weighted, is an Ebacc subject and a headline figure. Stats is just one for the 'other' basket.

Noodledoodledoo Tue 14-Jul-15 21:58:53

We have 9 lessons a fortnight with 1 a week in Yr 10 being Stats and then switching to Maths in Yr 11 when its the crucial time.

I am just a lowly teacher so not involved in the decisions but will be teaching a lot of Stats next year 5 out of 9 classes so it can't be that dull!!

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