This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
Advice pleasefor ds year 12 , wanting to start again at a nrw college(9 Posts)
Hi , that really .
Ds continued into school 6th form , but has not really been happy from the start , so this is not rrally COVID related , though will have an impact .
He wants to go to a college as opposed to school , restart the year with one of 5he samecsujects and choose 2 others that his school did not offer
I would be very grateful for other peoples insights .
I am very aware he is not happy with his choices and i want to give him the best advice .
Ahhh flip sake !!
I can spell ...hopevit makes sense !
A few of DD's friends restarted year 12, having realised too late for the 'transfer window' that they were taking the wrong subjects or were just terminally unhappy where they were. DD herself came to the conclusion, just too late to be taken back by her old school, that she really wished she hadn't moved, but her birthday is right at the beginning of the academic year, so she soldiered on.
So I would say, if your DS has researched the college and the new subjects and the college has a place for him, why not? One issue might be if he applies for university courses which are difficult about having taken three years to get the A level in one of his subjects, but certainly DD's friend who carried on with at least two of her original subjects had offers from everywhere she applied to. (And yes, some of them in the hallowed Russell Group, although she has opted to firm elsewhere).
He must appreciate that the grass isn't always greener, as they say, though.
I did one year of sixth form then switched to a local college. This was back in the 90s so things may be a bit different now. College was more of being left to your own devices in terms of whether you turned up or not, did the assignments etc. I found this too 'free' and skipped several classes, didn't do the work. The course I did was condensed into one year rather than two. In the end I failed the A-levels I took and passed (but just about) the City and Guilds I did.
Basically I never learned how to organise myself to work independently. That's why I struggled at 6th form because even though you had the school stuff of tutor groups and assembly and all that you we're still expected to organise your study in all the free periods. I spent most of those staring into space with not a clue what I was meant to be doing. Your son needs to look at exactly why he dislikes the 6th form because switching to college to take the same A-levels may not make any difference if it's actually the subject, essays, studying independently etc that he doesn't like.
Colleges are better (I think) for vocational education (Btecs etc) rather than A-levels. He needs to think more about what he wants to study and his preferred study style really.
Thank you so much for taking the time to reply .
Your words have helped me phrase my concerns to him soo much better !
The independant study thing wads my main concern .. ( it has been non existant in the last few weeks !!)
I have not said an out right " No " to him
but used a bit of reverse psychology, and told him to prove to me he can use allllll this free time he has to do extra work, and we will go from there .
I am torn from him not doing it , especially as @NewModelArmy said , it would mean his A level would be classed as a 3 year one , to wanting him to be happy.
Still had a good chat with him , and thank ypu again .
Oh I did " apply " his interest in going to the college on their website so he knows I am working with him . ( RP again !!) .
Opps it was @MarchingFrogs and @bookmum08 i need to tag !!.
Sorry @NewModelArmy , you came up because we were on a thread together a year ago on A levels and uni starting ( and now finished 😂😂)
Sometimes a fresh start can be good, and from what I've seen school sixth forms treat their students more like children than colleges do. Some don't mind this, but if that's what he dislikes about it, he might be happier at college. Likewise, if it's issues with specific people, being in a new environment could help.
At this age it has to be his choice, and his happiness is definitely more important than whether or not it takes him an extra year to complete his studies. Education isn't a race, but the effects of being in a place where he's very unhappy for another year could stay with him for a long time.
Your last post makes it seem as if you want to make the choice for him or coerce him into making the choice you want. Please don't do this. He's even less likely to want to apply himself to his studies if he feels forced into it, or trapped in a situation he's unhappy with. Would you feel motivated to do 'independent study' towards subjects you've lost interest in, in a place where you don't really want to be?
My son didn't change colleges but did do a 3 year 6th Form changing subjects (but retaining one). He in effect put himself down a year with people he knew which I thought he would have found embarrassing but he didn't and it was the best thing be did. He has now finished uni and has been in a graduate scheme job for 3 years.
Ds is in sixth form and very motivated. He has a double free one morning which means his lesson starts at 10.50am but he goes into college for 8.30am and uses his free periods to do his home work.
The sixth form is local to us whereas the colleges are all city centre based meaning there is the pull of being out of college and in MacDonalds or walking round the shopping centre scouting out girls (according to his mate who goes there). Unlike a lot of sixth forms that stick roughly to a school day timetable, they are not required to be in until their lesson starts. This can be a slippery slope.
Ds has a mate at sixth form who said before they started, I am going to knuckle down now, but he hasn't. Even with teachers breathing down his neck. His grades are not going to be great and that was before Covid.
I think your son needs to know that this would be his final shot at being funded for his A levels. Why did his choose his current sixth form? Why is he now choosing those other subjects? I think these are the questions I would be asking.