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To want to know what will happen with my year 10s GCSEs next year

(248 Posts)
bigbananafeet12 Sat 09-May-20 09:33:22

It’s now looking like schools aren’t going back in June. If teachers unions are not happy to return then, I can’t see what will be so different in September so who knows when they’ll be in. They’ve already had 5 weeks of ‘home learning’ with another 9 to go until they break up for summer. My ds has not been required to submit one piece of work since he left school on March 23rd. He has to do the work in his book and mark it as completed on Frog. Subsequently he’s had no feedback on anything he’s done. I’ve asked him to ask teachers if they can look at his work but he’s 15 and doesn’t like making a fuss. I try my best to look at what he’s up to but frankly have no confidence in my knowledge of physics etc! I also know that if I try to get too involved he will not be happy and at least now he is attempting to do the work. I don’t want it to be a battle.
I had a glimmer of hope that if he was back even part time in June we could ensure he was still on track and it would help restore his enthusiasm but obviously this looks unlikely.
So how on earth will schools have time to teach the GCSE syllabus plus revise as all previous years have been able to do. I know we’re having a global pandemic but to be honest I’m so worried about DS.
This is not a dig at teachers.

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Orangeblossom78 Sat 09-May-20 09:48:32

I also have a DS in year ten and know what you mean. Wonder what will happen

wheresmyliveship Sat 09-May-20 09:50:23

Teacher here. Our academy trust has said that the understanding is that the curriculum won’t be changed (because every school teaches in a different order), but remember that grade boundaries will be lower.

Issues that I see - fee paying schools are providing full timetables of lessons so the gap for the privileged is increasing; those who are disadvantaged will be more disadvantaged.

Advice for you: speak to head of year. Ask why no work is being marked. Get email addresses of teachers and email them work, cc in the head of year if necessary.

Year 10s are our current priority so they should be getting lots of attention

Orangeblossom78 Sat 09-May-20 09:50:43

What about e.g. DT, Food GCSEs where they need the facilities and equipment, and PE...will depend on the parents input and facilities at home I guess which is unfair on some children. Music also. Mine was getting music lessons at school but not anymore, just home practice stuff. Still paying for it though.

Orangeblossom78 Sat 09-May-20 09:52:36

Ours use google classroom and have to submit work daily and get comments- if it is not sent in on time get emails and then phone calls. We are also all getting calls to parents in nest weeks as well to see how things are going, and they are getting laptops to people who need them too

Orangeblossom78 Sat 09-May-20 09:53:30

remember that grade boundaries will be lower is that confirmed?

JellyBabiesSaveLives Sat 09-May-20 09:53:50

They’ll have to come up with a plan. But at the moment they’re trying to keep us alive so that plan isn’t a priority.

I have a year 10 and a year 13. I really really want to know, right now, what will happen for them both.

Living with uncertainty is bloody hard, isn’t it?

Looneytune253 Sat 09-May-20 09:55:43

I wouldn't worry too much. The GCSEs are graded in kinda a scale so if all the kids are missing some stuff then there will still be a percentage of them hitting 9s etc etc also they'll still get their grade unless they've fallen behind everyone else for some reason

bigbananafeet12 Sat 09-May-20 09:56:49

At best my ds is sent an answer sheet and he self markssad He would definitely not be happy if I started emailing school.

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Hoppinggreen Sat 09-May-20 09:57:30

Unfortunately I think there will be a huge gap between the dc who’s school set lots of work and ones that didn’t.
Dd was speaking to 2 friends last night, all of them at different schools. Dd has a full online timetable with lots of homework, friend one has about 3 hours a day with homework and lots of teacher interaction and friend two is luckily if she has 2 lessons a day, no homework set.
Dd is missing virtually no learning at all and friend three is getting virtually nothing, there’s a really big gap

Orangeblossom78 Sat 09-May-20 09:57:53

In our school they need five high grade Bs (6?) to enter sixth form so this is a big deal. For others too I'm sure.

Chocolatehamper Sat 09-May-20 10:00:03

Year 10 mum too. I would say it’s best to contact the school/head of year and ask them how they think your son is doing. Each school should have an email address that is being monitored at the very least.
Our school use SMHW which allows the children to upload their work, the teacher can mark it, upload grades and feedback and allows you to message the teacher, It works well. My Yr10 is struggling with lockdown generally and some subjects have been tough, others not so much as she can dedicate more time than a set lesson allows to grasp it. She has asked me what’s going to happen next year and is worried about her GCSEs.
We also have fortnightly welfare calls from their heads of year to check up on each child and the family generally, I asked about GCSEs last time I spoke to them and they said that they didn’t know themselves how things would work next year but they imagined there would have to be some allowances made.

bigbananafeet12 Sat 09-May-20 10:00:29

My ds was predicted 7s and 8s. Feeling this slipping away through no fault of his.

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silver1977 Sat 09-May-20 10:03:18

I have a dd year 10 too and worry as she doesn't seem to get as much work as my DS in year 5🙄.

I suppose they might just have enough time to finish the syllabus but no time for weeks of revision before their gcse's like they normally would. I wondered if they might push exams back a bit to allow time for that? 🤷‍♀️

Duvetday8 Sat 09-May-20 10:06:15

Grade boundaries are set after 60 percent of papers have been marked so if all do worse then boundaries will be lower (teacher and GCSE examiner here)

getdownonit Sat 09-May-20 10:07:03

My dd wants to change schools for sixth form. It's been a nightmare as no open days, no idea of whether their entrance exams will be amended or will they still have the same requirements re: GCSE passes?

moveandmove Sat 09-May-20 10:07:23

My ds is in year 5. He gets sent weekly work which he then sends back and it gets marked by the teacher with comments. I'm surprised that older children aren't getting that considering they are near gcse. Have you spoken to a teacher on the phone?

ineedaholidaynow Sat 09-May-20 10:08:45

But there is going to be a much wider gap between pupils. My Y10 DS is getting a full timetable, they start with registration at 8.30 and then live classrooms as if they were at school, plus homework and end of topic tests. Still not as good as being at actual school but better than nothing.

But nothing is what some pupils are getting, for a variety of reasons be it disengaged children, lack of support from school, lack of technology, lack of support from family, illness, bereavement, SEN issues etc.

Yes there will always be a gap, but this is unprecedented. Families who used to be engaged now can’t be, for many of the reasons listed above. Interestingly my DS has thrown himself wholeheartedly into remote learning and will probably be disappointed when schools reopen, but I assume he is probably unusual in that! Also can you imagine going into an exam knowing you haven’t studied say 1/4 of the paper but you have to answer all the questions. If that had been me, I would have freaked out and wrecked the rest of the exam paper too!

modgepodge Sat 09-May-20 10:09:11

It’s worth noting the NEU (biggest education union) is advising that teachers should not be expected to mark children’s work. So if you contact the school, they may come back to you with this.

Grand boundaries are based on how well a cohort does in the exams, so if the whole cohort does worse on average, pupils will all need a lower % to get a 1, a 2 and so on. Private schools are generally carrying on teaching (need to to justify charging fees still) but there are a small percentage of the population in these so I don’t think they’ll skew the picture too much. They will, of course, be advantaged, but they are anyway.

It’s such a crap situation. The unions obviously aren’t keen to return in June, most teachers I know think we shouldn’t return til September. I don’t understand what’s going to magically happen in September to make it safe though. Seems to me it will be the same situation as June.

TheHarryFormerlyKnownAsPrince Sat 09-May-20 10:09:50

Kind of tough if he isn’t happy with you emailing school really. He’s 14/15 and it’s your responsibility as a parent, he will have to suck it up!

Generallybewildered Sat 09-May-20 10:10:33

We’ve had this thread before.

I teach in a selective state school and we are teaching and marking every lesson plus homework. Therefore my Yr10 class (except for practicals) are still on track to complete the course before next Easter.

It’s horrendous there is such a disparity. A child who should get a 7 next year but is not being taught is now going to be behind a child who would have got a 5/6 in my school.
I don’t have the answer. I am doing the best for my students but even within my classes I can see the gap widening - those students who need a constant smile and a joke to keep them on track aren’t getting it. I am also worrying about the mental health of these children. I hope that Yr10/12 go back - I’m prepared to teach them!

Orangeblossom78 Sat 09-May-20 10:11:37

Grade boundaries are based on how well a cohort does in the exams

Is that fair on the ones who have had less input at home though. Sounds like in this situation things are going to be skewed towards the ones with more support and guidance.

lazylinguist Sat 09-May-20 10:12:20

I'm happy with the work my yr10 dd is doing, and it's being submitted and marked by her teachers. However, I do wonder how the lower grade boundaries will work if they are skewed by independent school kids having had a full timetable of live lessons. And yes, there will also be inequality between state school kids whose schools set loads of work and marked it and kids whose schools did the bare minimum. So it's really not going to be a level playing field whatever the exam boards do with grade boundaries.

Generallybewildered Sat 09-May-20 10:13:18

My dd wants to change schools for sixth form. It's been a nightmare as no open days

Next week we’re doing a whole week of introductory lessons and lectures for Yr11 - both our own and ones interested in joining the school in September.

bigbananafeet12 Sat 09-May-20 10:15:21

If schools aren’t back in September what will happen then? It’s sounding unlikely they’ll be back to normal by then. If it gets much later kids will have been out of school for nearly a year. They’re going to find it incredibly hard to readjust while under pressure to crack on with GCSEs. It’s such a mess.

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