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"On line Schooling"

(6 Posts)
Chocaholic73 Tue 20-Oct-09 14:51:54

First time on this board .. feeling rather overwhelmed, just started looking into home education for DD who is 12. Have any of you used the "online schools" ..briteschool and interhigh are the two I've come across so far?

AMumInScotland Tue 20-Oct-09 14:55:23

Hi, yes my DS was at Interhigh for Year 10 & 11. There's another mum on here who has a younger DS using it at the moment, so she might be able to tell you how it's going for a younger pupil.

It worked well for DS - he got a good set of iGCSEs, and the schedule gave him lots of time to spend on music, which was the main reason for him being HE.

Is there anything specific you'd like to know, or just generally?

Chocaholic73 Tue 20-Oct-09 16:57:51

Thanks - both really. The website is really good but you can't always tell from that of course, but it sounds from your son as though they can achieve good results. Basically, would you say they do what they say they will? Also, do you know anything about if they are successful with SEN children. DD is dyspraxic and has dyscalculia. My feeling is she would be better in this sort of environment - she is very easily distracted at school and doesn't seem to be learning much, although we know she is quite bright.

AMumInScotland Tue 20-Oct-09 17:12:14

I have no idea whether they are good with SEN - AFAIK no-one in DSs class had any issues like that. In general, they do teach the whole class at once - though the max I think is 15 to a class, so there is a better ratio. But still, they can't really teach in sets, even when they reach the exam classes. So, I don't know how the teachers differentiate the work if you're not going at the "class speed". I'd certainly say you should speak to them directly about that, to get an understanding of how they'd arrange the work if she is struggling.

There's certainly less distraction - the teacher can see if they are chatting amongst themselves, as it all appears on the screen (like instant messaging), and can cut off a pupil if they are causing disruption to the class, even taking them to "another room" to tell them off while the class carry on together for a short time.

We were certainly happy in our dealings with them - certainly had no more issues than we did with ordinary schools.

I think one of the first things you need to think about is what you hope to get out of HE, and why you don't find school effective. Interhigh is very like school - that has pluses and minuses. So, you're learning in a group, and have specialist teachers, which suited DS well.

OTOH you have no flexibility about the classes or subjects, you are in an "unsetted" class, you have no flexibility about the timetable for the week or the year.

So, a lot of people who choose to HE because school doesn't suit thier DC would probably find that Interhigh didn't suit them either. But if your problem isn't about the way school does the academic stuff, then it might work well for you.

As I say, it was just a practical school choice for us, to let DS get a lot of music time, rather than him not gtting on well in a school environment.

Chocaholic73 Wed 21-Oct-09 12:18:22

Thanks for all this very interesting. I am waiting to hear back from them and will see what they say. I don't have any problem with the way schools work academically at all. As you have found, for different reasons, there is an awful lot of time in conventional school when they are not learning or even in lessons. My DD is struggling particularly with this and with her organisational skills, such things as getting changed for PE are a total nightmare for her. For health reasons she lacks the stamina to cope with the school day and |I have just worked out that she is actually only in academic lessons for approx 15 hours of the 33.75 hours that she is in school each week.

AMumInScotland Wed 21-Oct-09 16:02:42

Oh if she finds the school day too long, then it would definitely help in that regard - DS only had classes in the mornings (I think the hours vary between years), and you don't have any travelling time to tire you before and after school. Obviously, you do need to make other plans to cover the things which the school doesn't - non-academic subjects and social stuff are limited (well, non-existent really!), but you can be more flexible about fitting that round tiredness etc when you're making your own arrangements.

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