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(28 Posts)
MrsvWoolf Fri 14-May-10 15:19:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

piscesmoon Sat 15-May-10 14:17:19

Have you thought of flexi school? My nephews went in just for the subjects they wanted to do. One went in just for Art and Music. It was well worth it as he went on to do A'level at the same school.

musicposy Sat 15-May-10 18:55:47

Piscesmoon, do you know how your nephew managed to get the school to agree?

It's a genuine question wink DD1 has been considering this for the non academic subjects such as dance, and also Latin if we can get it.

Our LA secondary bloke who is very helpful has contacted a few schools on our behalf and we've spoken to a few informally but the answer has been a resounding no from everyone. No school will agree to take her on that basis.

I'm now bracing myself to write a letter to the school she came out of, but I want to get it right because it's probably our only chance of an agreement. The other local school has said no and nowhere else does Latin except for a couple of schools 20 miles away who have also said no. Also virtually all the schools in the area except this one are very oversubscribed and have waiting lists.

She was a good student there so I'm sure she'd be a credit to them but I think the trouble is that if a student only gets 2 GCSEs they count as not having achieved 5 A-Cs, even if they got those results elsewhere - so it wrecks the school's league tables. Also absence figures seem to be a problem for them.

We definitely don't want to do full time, just a couple of subjects.

Could you find out how they approached the school and what angle they used? The only people I know who have got a flexischool agreement are on medical grounds and we don't have those.

piscesmoon Sat 15-May-10 22:35:29

I think they were just lucky I'm afraid. I think it depends very much on the individual Head and I suspect it comes down to funding, as well as the league tables. I think my SIL did it off her own bat and rang a few up and went to see them. They did it at a very large comprehensive- a community school. They just went in for the actual lessons they wanted to do. They didn't have any grounds. It sounds as if it isn't going to be possible in your case, especially if you have already had the LA bloke trying on your behalf. Is a college of further education any good?

MrsvWoolf Sat 15-May-10 23:00:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsvWoolf Sat 15-May-10 23:10:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

piscesmoon Sun 16-May-10 07:54:33

My nephews are HEed for other subjects-they just went in for the ones that were difficult to do at home. Do you need to bother with GCSE art if she is only 12yrs? My nephews did very few subjects at that level and then did A'levels. The arty one is now on a fine arts course at university.

piscesmoon Sun 16-May-10 09:12:02

Perhaps I should make it clear how it worked. They were not part of the school. They elected to wear the school sweatshirt, so as not to stand out, but the Head said that it wasn't necessary. They didn't have a form/tutor group, school letters etc. They merely turned up for their lesson and went home again. Art in particular was in a block so I think it was just one day a week and he took a packed lunch. I have no idea if this is normal, or they just had the luck to live in the right area. My nephew is very talented at art and it meant that he had an expert to guide him in the way of the exam,plus others to bounce ideas off and the materials. However talented, I'm not sure that he could have done it at home with parents who are not in the least artistic.
Academic subjects were much easier to study on his own.

lolapoppins Sun 16-May-10 10:39:08

Have you looked into trinity art awards? In the county I live, there are five groups in different town offering them to HE kids (I think school kids can do them too if they run on a weekend). Itake my ds to one, he's only seven but he can still join in on the art classes which he loves.

Anyhow, they are bronze, silver and gold awards, which they start working toward from age 10 or 11. The bronze is an art diploma, the sliver is equvivilant to a GCSE and the gold is an A leveling art. If they stick tongues cousse, they will have an art a level (the trinity awards are accepted by all colleges/unis) by the time they are 16/17.

If you cat me, I can send you some info, the arts
award courses are getting very popular and are run all over the country.

lolapoppins Sun 16-May-10 10:39:59

A level, sorry. Stupid phone!

MrsvWoolf Sun 16-May-10 18:42:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lolapoppins Sun 16-May-10 19:10:00

Mrsvwoolf - if you look on this site you will be able to find more info about trinity arts awards in your area.

piscesmoon Sun 16-May-10 19:10:16

Just curious-don't answer if you don't want to -why do you want her to do GCSEs so early?
I can see that if you are not wanting to use Art as a career it wouldn't be too important.

piscesmoon Sun 16-May-10 19:12:15

Sorry-shouldn't have posted-just being nosey! Please ignore.

lolapoppins Sun 16-May-10 19:15:18

Picesmoon - obviously not answering for MVW, but I have found that a lot of HEers I know start GCSEs at 12/13 to spread them out a bit (sometimes to spear the cost as well) rather than doing lots all at once like you would in school.

lolapoppins Sun 16-May-10 19:17:10

Gosh, please ignore my spelling! Am using an i phone with a mind of it's own!

piscesmoon Sun 16-May-10 19:32:48

Thanks-I just don't like the idea of exams if you don't have to do them!

lolapoppins Sun 16-May-10 19:38:55

The home educators I know who are putting thier kids in for GCSE exams are doing so as they have looked into further education for after the age of 16 and feel they do need them for the courses thier children want to go on and study.

I have a friend who's 16 year old started at college to study art last sept on just his portfolio, but they have insisted he takes maths and english GCSE while he is there. It's a bit demorilising for him really, the rest of the kids doing them are the ones who failed them the first time round and have no interrest - he's getting a lot of stick for doing well and keeping his head down. I know that she now wishes she got him to do them a couple of years ago.

piscesmoon Sun 16-May-10 19:44:10

It is interesting-I have limited, second hand experience-but that is that HEers largely ignore GCSEs and go on and do A'levels. My nephews have both gone onto university without the 'normal' quota of exams. The third one isn't planning on doing any. That was why I was just being nosey-I couldn't see any point in having them early, but I can see that if you were paying for them and had the time to spread them out, it would make sense.

MrsvWoolf Sun 16-May-10 22:07:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

musicposy Sun 16-May-10 22:10:55

Thank you piscesmoon for the information about how it worked for your nephew - I want as much info as possible on how it worked for others. She has a place for next year on an accelerated learning course for 14-16 year olds at a college about 10 miles away to do a psychology GCSE, but because it's accelerated learning it's aimed at stretching bright children, so only academic subjects available, albeit unusual ones. Sadly the college in our town won't take under 16s.

I know we could in theory do Latin at home but it's the one thing not going so well. My brother teaches it to her. He did A level Latin and degree work in classics, so he knows his stuff, but he's not a teacher IYSWIM. So he often over-explains, does stuff that is irrelevant to the GCSE, or of far too high a standard, saying it's good for her to be well taught - but he doesn't think he can get her to be able to pass the GCSE exam in the time and I can't seem to get him to focus. We were dismayed when she has a schooled friend in year 8 (a year below her) who started Latin at school in September and quite obviously overtook her very quickly. So we really need a proper teacher - but can't afford to pay for one. I was too thick to do Latin at school wink

Sorry OP for thread hijack. One thing I was thinking for you, is that dance schools are starting to do GCSE dance, so I wondered if any art places might do the same. Is it worth approaching, say, galleries etc in your area, or anywhere that runs art workshops, and asking if this is something they would consider? We are lucky in that our local art gallery runs lots of children's courses on art on a Saturday at reasonable cost - and I think GCSE is something they might do if they had the interest. Art's not DD1's thing - but we might look into it for DD2 in future.

tethersend Sun 16-May-10 22:15:26

Could you afford a tutor?

I am an art teacher, and most art teachers I know would love to tutor outside of school, but simply cannot find any work. They'd bite your arm off!

It could be worth contacting local schools or teacher training colleges to see if anybody would be interested...

annielouise Mon 17-May-10 12:57:35

Not sure if this helps but I noticed a course in the local library (in Cardiff) that was running an afternoon course on Latin - beginners, improvers and advanced. If I remember rightly it was through an historical association. Possibly 10 weeks courses or maybe 30 weeks. Sorry, I can't remember the exact details. Obviously you might not be in Wales but maybe other organisations would run something similar. It might not be aimed at a GCSE but might give the groundwork to then do the GCSE independently once the basics have been mastered.

An arts centre is also running GCSE art, aimed at 14-16 year olds. I haven't asked yet if they'd be willing to take on a younger child (12) but again it is something to ask any local arts centres you have.

MrsvWoolf Tue 18-May-10 13:59:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

tethersend Tue 18-May-10 19:32:29

Where are you based, MrsvWoolf?

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