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How can I encourage a reluctant DC to apply for scholarship?

(15 Posts)
Microwaste Thu 17-Nov-16 10:10:54

My eldest DC is in year 6 at a private school. We can't afford for her to stay there for secondary without a scholarship. She's very very bright, in the top sets for everything and her teachers are very encouraging towards the idea of a scholarship. In addition to that, she's a hard worker and very motivated and loves school. The problem is, it's come down to the time to fill in the forms and she's adamant she doesn't want to do it. She's convinced that she's not good enough, not clever enough. I don't want to put her under undue pressure, but I do think it's something she could easily achieve. I don't know what to do or say to convince her she can do it. It's frustrating that she doesn't see what she has to offer.

Seeline Thu 17-Nov-16 11:07:54

Does she really understand that she will have to go to a different school if you don't get the scholarship?
Is there automatic progression to the senior school, or do they have to do exams anyway (assuming that the scholarship will involve some form of exam/assessment).
Would it be an academic scholarship, or is there a possibility of sport/music/art/drama etc?

Avebury Thu 17-Nov-16 11:19:27

Before you push her on this find out how much difference a scholarship would actually make to the fees.
In a lot of schools these days scholarship fee reductions are minimal and more for the prestige and it is bursaries that need applying for for the decent discounts.

Microwaste Thu 17-Nov-16 12:14:22

It's an academic scholarship, they do others but I don't think she'd get them. I should say that even if she got it, it wouldn't mean that she'd definitely go there, but it would give us more of a chance of affording it. I'm guess I'm hoping that the more they want her the more chance we've got of negotiating! I know they've offered significant reductions to others in the past. She does know, and she's ok with it, we've been to an open day at the local state school.
I don't think we've got any chance of getting a bursary, the difficulties with affording it are because we have too many children rather than a low income!

Needmoresleep Thu 17-Nov-16 13:08:47

Have you spoken to the bursar. if not you should. Different schools factor in different things, so "too many children" might well be taken into account. There is no harm in having a pretty open heart to heart.

Bursaries in part depend on the competition. So if there is an amazing child who needs a 100% bursary, the overall pot for others will be smaller. But they know your child, know she is good and fits in, and want to keep her, so if the competition is weak you should have a good chance.

Is your daughter worried about family finances and does not want to be given priority over others? If there is scope for a bursary you can say that the scholarship exam is only to improve her chances.

happygardening Thu 17-Nov-16 14:49:39

Years ago I was once told by a very experienced long in the tooth teacher that you don't just have to be bright to get a scholarship (he was talking about top schools here) you also have to be hard working and really want it. He went on to say that many very bright children shouldn't be pushed down the scholarship road because they just aren't or can't or are not used to putting that level if effort in, whist less bright ambitious children can and will do all of that. DS2 was 7 at the time and I didnt really understand what he was saying or appreciate he perhaps he was aiming his comments at me in particular 11 years down the road I now understand! My DS2 has spent much of his school life with his his feet metaphorically and physically on the desk, a master at "winging" exams I've discovered that there is little we as parents can do to change them you can lead the proverbial horse to water............

sendsummer Thu 17-Nov-16 22:45:02

Whether or not she takes the scholarship or not it is worth tackling her lack of confidence. I would ask a teacher she has respect for to have a quiet chat with her to find out her concerns and try and build her up. It would be sad if she went through life not taking up opportunities she might like because she was afraid to fail. Of course as said by PPs she may have other reasons for not wanting to try.

happygardening your comments remind me of one of Homer Simpson quotes 'if something is hard to do then it's not worth doing'. Your DS is not the only one to do that.

Microwaste Fri 18-Nov-16 07:12:17

Thanks everyone. I don't have any worries about her commitment, she works hard and is very self-motivated at school, she just can't seem to accept that she's really good! I don't know where her lack of confidence/fear of failing comes from although I was the same when I was younger
Anyway, we managed to get the form done at least and I'll see if we can talk to the bursar just in case

Madcats Fri 18-Nov-16 17:20:12

We are at a 3-18 set of schools. A year 7 scholarship is worth about £1,500 from memory. Lots of kids get bursaries; some for virtually full fees.

Bursaries are assessed on financial need but I am sure it helps if DC is sporty/musical/bright (preferably a combination of all 3).

bojorojo Fri 25-Nov-16 12:13:52

It is a bit sad that you are approaching Y7 and have financial difficuties in continuing to afford this school. You must have known what the score was! I think this has rubbed off on your DD and she now feels pressurised. She is frightened of failure and I think you should have thought about your finances a bit earlier and not pressurise her to do the scholarship. Ask about a bursary by all means and see if you qualify. Sorry.

Microwaste Fri 25-Nov-16 20:39:04

Yes we've always known the score and the children have too, we were quite prepared and happy to go for the state school at secondary. However, she's just been doing so so well, it seemed a shame not to explore our options thoroughly. As it happens, she has been offered the scholarship so now we have that decision to make.

Dozer Fri 25-Nov-16 20:43:08

She's been offered it without sitting tests?!

Ditsy4 Fri 25-Nov-16 20:48:11

Stop trying to convince her. Who does she like and respect at school? Ask them to have a word to encourage her. Children often listen to staff and she might feel more able to discuss her fears with someone outside the family. I have lots of conversations with children and they are remarkably astute sometimes. Perhaps there is more to it.

jelliebelly Fri 25-Nov-16 21:06:51

If you've only just filled the forms in how has she been offered a scholarship? We've just submitted forms for our y 6 prep and exams aren't until Jan.

Microwaste Fri 25-Nov-16 21:48:49

It's a different type of scholarship to the one we were doing forms for, she'd already done an assessment for that one but no forms required!
There's another assessment in the next couple of weeks for the one we submitted last week.

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