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If A pupil From a Grammar School/ Selective 6th Form Comprehensive narrowly misses requirements say they get 3A grades instead of 4 A grades if that is the requirement Would the School look favorably

(22 Posts)
soul2000 Sun 23-Feb-14 15:43:58

Thankfully this did not happen to my Niece/Nephew , but it must be heartbreaking for any student to be faced with this prospect. It must be almost like being Expelled ( For nothing more than being Unlucky) .To be t old "Don't Darken our Doors again" despite being there 5 years or so must be one of the cruelest things any teacher could tell a student the teacher has known five years..

I was wondering if anyone has knowledge of whether a school would take these circumstances in to account , and "Would" make exceptions Or would it be " Good Luck with your Future" but don't bother us again.

This thread also links in to the "Benefit of Selective Education " thread in relation that a Selective School is "Responsible" for a student they have had for five years.

Justawaterformeplease Sun 23-Feb-14 16:04:43


tiggytape Sun 23-Feb-14 16:08:08

Schools often operate some form of selection to study A Levels for example. Those who fail to meet the garde requirements will probably feel very upset at having to leave but A Levels are very difficult and only suited to those who have both a high level of aptitude and commitment to their subjects. There is no point setting someone up to fail when the school knows they will not be able to keep up with the course.

That said though, most schools do try to help. For example a pupil may not be allowed to study A Level Maths unless they have an A at GCSE because they really do need to be at that standard to keep up. But the school may have lower grade requirements for other subjects and may let them stay if they choose other options. They may also be understanding of pupils who were expected to get good grades but had ill health or other difficult circumstances at that time.

tiggytape Sun 23-Feb-14 16:15:32

.. and grammar schools are likely to see this more because they tend to offer only A Levels at 6th form not courses suited to other pupils.

Plus, by law, they have to apply the same selection criteria to external and internal candidates. So they cannot overlook lower grades for internal candidates just because of their connection to the school.

soul2000 Sun 23-Feb-14 16:41:00

Tiggytape. I have just looked at a Grammar School's Sixth form Admission Code. The Usual requirement is "4A s and "2 B s , It does state though that Illness and some other considerations may be taken in to consideration.

It also states at point 4 That students considering the Sixth Form Should Have back up options ( In case of not achieving the required grades)

I think its a case of the school being very clever in their wording of the admission code , it allows them options should they wish although loose in what it says.

duchesse Sun 23-Feb-14 16:45:10

I do happen to know that pupils not deemed up to snuff in our local super-selective are respectfully required to leave and study elsewhere.

OddBoots Sun 23-Feb-14 16:45:56

"Plus, by law, they have to apply the same selection criteria to external and internal candidates. So they cannot overlook lower grades for internal candidates just because of their connection to the school."

Is that really the case for sixth form? My ds is only Y10 but we are looking around at sixth forms and one of them (a school with a sixth form) makes no mention of the admissions criteria for current students but will admit the best 20 external students based on their average GCSE grade.

DoctorDonnaNoble Sun 23-Feb-14 16:46:06

I am a year 11 form tutor at a grammar. We target those we think may miss the requirement for extra support and I also make sure they have a Plan B. Most years they all make the grade. Sometimes there are some that don't. Some of them are shocked, our head is very strict though. However, if it is close a place is often kept open until after re-marks. We have students miss the entry requirements by 2 UMS marks, but there is no negotiation.

Reincarnatedpig Sun 23-Feb-14 19:17:12

I certainly know of girls who have not been allowed to do their choice of subjects at A level. School I am thinking of wants A* in certain subjects.

On the other hand I know of people given concessions during move from AS to A2 levels due to illness. Although strictly speaking their results were below par.

Depends on the school and the level of extenuating circumstances I guess.

TalkinPeace Sun 23-Feb-14 20:33:22

round here they all change school at 16
the colleges that are in demand take no prisoners
hit the mark or go elsewhere
the others are more relaxed
sadly post 16 education is a pretty competitive market

tiggytape Sun 23-Feb-14 21:29:23

Is that really the case for sixth form?

Yes it is. They cannot have lower offers for internal candidates than external ones. If they set grades fo rentry they must be the same for all applicants. This is what the Admissions Code says:

2.6 Applying for places at Sixth Form - Children and their parents applying for sixth form places may use the CAF, although if they are already on the roll they are not required to do so in order to transfer into year 12. Admission authorities can, however, set academic entry criteria for their sixth forms, which must be the same for both external and internal places. As with other points of entry to schools, highest priority in oversubscription criteria for sixth form places must be given to looked after children and previously looked after children who meet the academic entry criteria. As stated in paragraph 1.9 m) above, any meetings held to discuss options and courses must not form part of the decision process on whether to offer a place.

Some pupils or parents don't always realise that schools (selective and non selective schools) can set admission requirements for 6th form study and children who do not meet these may have to leave or do other options. It is however the norm in comps as well as grammar schools to do this and is perfectly allowed.

soul2000 Sun 23-Feb-14 21:42:31

Doctor Noble . Telling a Pupil that they cant come back for 6th Form must be one of the worst things you can tell a student.

My Nephew had a back up option if he did not get the 4 As required, he was ( Like a Rabbit in the Headlights with the thought of going to a Comprehensive) for sixth form.

circular Sun 23-Feb-14 21:52:50

Tiggytape although the admissions criteria is published as being the same for internal and external students , it is the minimum requirements.
Reading between the lines when DD1 applied last year, external students only received offers when their predictions were way above the minimum.

The school she now goes to even published that because of high demand for places, external students would typically have 8 good passes. even though the minimum requirements were 5 A* to C with A or B in subjects being taken for AS. There was also a mini personal statement bit on the application form that was taken into consideration.

Of course, once they gave an offer to an external student, they would only have to hit minimum requirements to keep the place, not their predictions.

senua Sun 23-Feb-14 21:54:22

It must be almost like being Expelled (For nothing more than being Unlucky)

What has luck got to do with it?

Telling a Pupil that they cant come back for 6th Form must be one of the worst things you can tell a student.

If they are sensible then they have a Plan B.
I would say that telling them they can't come back for Y13 is worse.

morry1000 Sun 23-Feb-14 22:12:13

Reading this thread I don't know whether DD has got a chance on Wednesday or not. It is reassuring to know that because of her age she wont be asked to gain higher than what appears by Grammar School requirements quite low at B Grades for subjects studied and C grades in English/Maths.

tiggytape Sun 23-Feb-14 22:44:19

circular - that is correct. Many schools can fill much of their 6th form with current pupils who meet their grades so they don't have many places left for newcomers and therefore competition is high.
However they cannot set a 'B' grade minimum for newcomers if they don't apply it to internal candidates as well.
In practice it ends up as you say in many schools where current pupils mostly meet the minimum requirements.

RuddyDuck Mon 24-Feb-14 01:10:46

That's really interesting tiggytape. My dcs comprehensive states that there is a minimum requirement if 5bs to get into 6th form (As in maths if studying maths or physics) . However it is very oversubscribed and the children who get offers are predicted way higher than that.

A minimum of 1/3 of the places are for external candidates. In practice it ends up being a roughly 50:50 split. Theoretically, though, if they didn't have many external applicants, the school could end up offering places to external applicants with lower predictions than internal ones (very unlikely but theoretically possible). eg if all the external applicants had predictions of 5 bs and 3 cs, and all the internal ones had predictions of 5as and 3 bs, some of the internal ones would be turned down because a minimum of 1/3 of the places have to go to external applicants, even if they have lower predictions (although they would all still have to have the minimum predictions of 5 bs).

Not sure how this works if the school is supposed to give the same treatment to internal and external candidates. There is no minimum number of places for internal applicants, the school can make all its offers to external applicants if they meet the criteria.

saintlyjimjams Mon 24-Feb-14 06:53:07

Every 6th form I know of (grammar, comp, private) has minimum entry requirements for A levels. A level subjects (whether studied at grammar, comp or indie) have minimum entry requirements. Some subjects are fussier than others.

Not sure that this is anything to do with grammar schools.

wordfactory Mon 24-Feb-14 08:31:38

Our local outstanding faith comp makes a big deal about getting vicars letters and church attendance at 11.

Then at 16 it kicks out all the low achieving christians and happily makes room for the atheist high achievers from local private schools and grammar schools...

cory Tue 25-Feb-14 07:28:25

It isn't entirely about colleges/schools suiting themselves: it is also about what is best for the student.

It is a big step up from GCSE's to A-levels even for straight A students. Dd has several friends who have already had advice about how to revamp their A-level choices because they are not keeping up. Better than to fail at the end I would say.

Perhaps the college system is kinder because there everybody has to change, so you don't get singled out by having to leave school. Not getting into your preferred college is no worse than not getting into your preferred university or not getting the first job you apply for: it's one of those things young people have to learn to cope with.

cory Tue 25-Feb-14 07:29:05

sorry, should have said: Who had already had advice by the middle of last term (forgetting how time flies)

ReallyTired Tue 25-Feb-14 13:17:43

I think its fair that all sixth forms are selective. The entry grades that the OP mentions are hardly onerous for a child who is bright enough to get into a super selective. If laziness has meant that a child has under achieved then the shock of not getting into the sixth form may well be a much needed kick up the back side. If you want a superselective school then you have to "live and die by the sword". You accept that if your child has not reached the standard after GCSE then they should look elsewhere.

I think a child with exceptional circumstances would have make the exceptional circumstances known to the school long before results day. There is no point in coming out with the violins once a child has underachieved. There would have to be evidence that child is capable of the achievement asked and possibly a doctor's letter if the child was ill.

Having to change school for sixth form is not the end of the world. It is not like being "expelled" at all. A child who is excluded on behaviour grounds would find it next to impossible to get accepted for A-level study anywhere. I am sure that the nearest secondary modern/ sixth form college would take a grammar school rejectee with open arms for an appriopiate course.

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