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secondary school teachers - need some objective views on this...

(11 Posts)
adelicatequestion Thu 15-Sep-11 15:35:29

At DD school they choose 2 GCSE's to do in a year during yr 9.

Then they do a further 3 options in yr 10 along with Maths, English Lang, Science modules etc.

I am absolutely against this, especially as every parent I have spoken to has voiced concerns that their children have not qchieved the grades they were capable of if they had waited a year (or 2!).

I am going to write a letter to teh Head and Governers, but obviously the teachers at teh school can;t do anything but tow the party line.

Is it a good or bad thing? If there are advantages, what are they?

I would love to hear things from teh other side of the fence so to speak before launching into the school.

TIA

noblegiraffe Thu 15-Sep-11 16:31:01

What year is she in? It sounds shit except possibly for the very brightest. However, modular exams are being scrapped from September 2012 and after that there will be a complete overhaul of GCSEs so they might be rethinking their plans anyway.

adelicatequestion Thu 15-Sep-11 19:06:09

she's in year 9.

They do KS3 in 2 years then 2 option gcse's in yr 9.

I think it sucks, and hope they change it. It's not modular, they get double the amount of timetabled time and do it in a year instead of 2 years.

cricketballs Thu 15-Sep-11 19:36:36

there is a school close to where I live that do something similar; take 3 options in year 10 and take the exams and the end of the year, then another 3 in year 11. I am personally very against it and I would never support such a system.

Students (unless they are v bright) in year 10 do not have the maturity and skills in order to succeed at a high level and I really feel that this system is not doing them any favours. Yes, they have loads of GCSEs but only at average grades rather than achieving higher grades. And where does developing any enthusiasm for a subject take place?

However, I do not think you will have much success at getting your school to change in the immediate future it would be interesting to question if they are trying to change their bacc figures.......

kritur Thu 15-Sep-11 19:41:50

I've taught secondary for 6 years (currently lecturing in a university) and I think it is an appalling idea. In Year 9 they are in no way mature enough to do GCSEs which are essentially exams designed for 16 year olds. Unless a child is incredibly talented at something then it just isn't worth it. Why can't kids be kids for a year? To make mistakes and it not actually matter! They are continually assessed, Y9, Y10, Y11, Y12, Y13, it never ends.......
The sooner the government ensures we go back to terminal assessment in Y11 and 13 the better!

penguin73 Thu 15-Sep-11 19:42:52

As I have put on another thread it is an awful idea and does not work. I only wish the parents in our school would realise this and get writing to the Governors as we are totally forced to tow the party line and not discuss the horrendous flaws in this idea that are leaving the majority of pupils with far lower qualifications than they are truly capable of.

noblegiraffe Thu 15-Sep-11 19:55:12

What is your school's CVA? (You can find this out by looking up your school in your LA league table

If the students are achieving their potential (and that includes A*s for A* students) then the CVA will be 1000 or more. If it is under 1000, that shows that they are short-changing kids who could be doing better under the more usual GCSE system.

penguin73 Thu 15-Sep-11 21:34:30

Although CVA is such a general statistic based on SATS it should be treated with care - a more accurate indication would be speaking to subject teachers who have experience of delivering the curriculum and 'know' their pupils if only this was a viable option. Teaching to pass an exam in 3 years can never equate to teaching depth of knowledge and developing a real interest and passion over 5 in my opinion.

spiderpig8 Tue 20-Sep-11 13:21:56

aiming for 10 A* in academic subjects in one sitting is much better than a huge portfolio of lower grades imho.

startail Wed 21-Sep-11 14:49:17

My school stopes doing maths a year early almost 30 years ago. Exactly the reasons given here. Pupils did better with another years practice and maturity.

empirestateofmind Wed 21-Sep-11 14:56:52

There was a similar thread a few days ago (which I posted on) here.

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