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is this legal? AQA scrapping DDs result and forcing a resit for the whole year

(57 Posts)
ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 15:09:31

has anyone else got this predicament? im very very angry right now.

DD is 15 and in year 11.
In year 10, she took several GCSEs, including all the science GCSEs. She got top Cs in them all, she was working at an E a year ago, her improvement has been epic and the work she put in was superhuman, she revised, revised and revised for the exams and was ecstatic with her Cs for all of them, Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

so why the actual fuck is she having to resit one i asked?

so i rang the school to ask this, and ask what happens if she then gets a D on the resit.....

answer
AQA "misinformed" the school, something to do with percentages claimed during the year, blah blah blah < head of science felt i was clearly too thick to have it all explained properly>.....school say its completely the exam boards fault, theyve complained etc but upshot is that she has to resit her weakest subject.

im so so pissed off, it makes the hard work mean nothing, it means that if she then gets a lower grade that lower grade stands....

ive complained and got no where. Head of Science says he has complained, and many other schools are in the same predicament due to the exam board giving them "duff information"

why is no one held accountable for this "duff information" and why does my child and many others have to suffer for it?

whats the point of me telling DD to work hard, revise, if the grade she got is simply pulled from under her in this way?

NoSelfControl Fri 12-Oct-12 18:16:14

It sounds like the school may not have cashed in the Core GCSE modules. If you don't do this the students have to resit at least one module to satisfy the new terminal exam requirements (at least 40% completed in the year they certificate - probably one module plus the controlled assessment.) From what I understand from AQA, if the students have not cashed in (like your DD) the better grade will count. This was the case with our separate scientists who completed resits. Hope that helps!

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 18:18:26

ive been categorically told by the head of science today that the better grade will not count.

ive check and double checked.

she only sat the exam in the summer and got the result in August this year.

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 18:30:21

i posted in here hoping for someone with some knowledge because the head of science told me that DDs school is in no way alone in this

i posted in AIBU but decided to post here in the hope that someone in the education system could advise.

she will not be able to use the grade she got - the grade is scrapped and the resit grade is the one that will count. i have checked and triple checked on this point (obviously)

NoSelfControl Fri 12-Oct-12 18:30:36

How annoying for you both - it must be very soul destroying for your DD after all of her hard work. You may get more sense out of the exams office - they should be able to tell you whether the Core GCSE was cashed in or not. If not it was a cock up by the school - AQA won't automatically do it. Your DD should already have a single GCSE in the bag at this point and be focussing on Additional Science. Unfortunately exam rules and regs are changing all of the time but that doesn't help you. I need to phone AQA on Monday so will ask them about the resits for you and report back!

NoSelfControl Fri 12-Oct-12 18:32:44

Oooops sorry - cross post! I am a Head of Science and this is the first I have heard of it (nothing from other HoDs at other schools either). I will have an ask around though

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 18:34:21

thank you.
she sat physics, chemistry and biology this summer just gone and got Cs in all three. she was overjoyed when she got her results in August because the work she put in was over and above the call of duty - she really did work for it, and the head of science acknowledged this today in saying it is a very rare student who does what she did in terms of improvement.

i feel so sorry for her that it was for nothing. He is putting her in for the resit for chemistry - but he said she could have resat any one of them as her marks were all roughly the same in all 3 subject with a strong C in all of them.

NoSelfControl Fri 12-Oct-12 18:37:00

Good luck to her - I will report back if I find out anything!

TheFallenMadonna Fri 12-Oct-12 18:40:01

I am also a head of science. Can you tell me what the exam codes are, and what qualifications she is doing? So triple Science or Core and Additional Science.

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 18:46:43

its not triple - triple is not affected.

its core and additional. apparently AQA gave the wrong info to the school and are now backtracking. (this is aswell as moving the boundaries from jan - june!) but that would not have affected her - she got solid Cs in all 3 subjects.

this is what mummytime said on the other thread and this is in line with what i was told by the head of science
from mummytime on my other thread:-
"This is a weird situation which only exist for one group taking the exams. Previous groups could resit what they wanted, groups after have to do all their exams in one go.
For this group only, a percentage of the marks (I think it is 60% but I can't remember for sure) has to be taken at the time the students "certificate". So students may be forced to resit portions they did "okay" on, just to get this required percentage.
Most schools I know were working with this in mind, but a certain pattern of passes might mean someone has to resit.

It is totally confusing, but is the exam system, for one year only."

this is in line with what i was told - so far ive only found mummytime who knows what im on about.

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 18:48:04

our school was not in knowledge of the full facts - they say AQA have cocked up, but its basically tough luck.

NoSelfControl Fri 12-Oct-12 18:55:23

In a nutshell I think the school (for whatever reason) did not 'cash in' - Core Science is a totally separate qualification and you need to submit the qualification code at the end of Year 10 to get the GCSE. It is not beyond the realms of the possible that AQA gave the wrong info but I think the certification guidelines are in the specification so surprised the school missed it (HoD and exams office).

TheFallenMadonna Fri 12-Oct-12 18:56:11

The 40% rule is very well publicised by all exam boards. We changed to AQA last year, and knew to factor it in. I also think they forgot to certificate, and are re-doing one module and the CA. We have people resitting, and the resit will count, but not someone who exceeded expectations. I am dubious about this being an exam board error...

NoSelfControl Fri 12-Oct-12 18:59:49

I'm with you on this one Madonna! I would have been hauled over the coals for making the same mistake.......

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 20:04:43

so tell me what i do about this - i dont really give a rats arse whose at fault but i do give a rats arse that my DD is suffering because someone cocked up.

what do i do? this is all wrong.

TheFallenMadonna Fri 12-Oct-12 20:29:07

Unfortunately, I think she will have to resit as the school have said. The school could appeal, but I suspect they will gave already done that.

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 20:36:54

bollocks. so i will never get to the bottom of this then, she just had to resit and take the resit mark no matter what....

very very very pissed off mother here on the war path.

Knowsabitabouteducation Fri 12-Oct-12 20:58:19

I also teach Science and I am struggling to grasp the problem.

Could she have done exams towards and old specification that is expiring?

I don't understand why she would be forced to resit a unit. It is perhaps a coding problem? The same exams can have different codes if they are to be cashed in as Science or Additional vs Separate Sciences.

However, there is an underlying principle that students are never made to suffer for dodgy admin, whether at school or board level.

I recommend that you try to get full possession of the facts without getting angry. If you are angry, everyone will clam up and your daughter will potentially lose out.

Is your DD the only one in her class in this predicament?

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 21:03:06

no. the whole year group are in the same boat, but DD was one of the few who achieved C's in all 3 subjects.

i am angry now i think about it. the facts were relayed to me and i was calm - very calm.

please read the quote from mummytime above that i quoted on this thread from my other thread.

For this group only, a percentage of the marks (I think it is 60% but I can't remember for sure) has to be taken at the time the students "certificate".

I don't think this is quite right. I teach English and drama, not science, but always thought that 'the 60% rule' applied to all subjects in all exam boards (clearly I could be wrong). If that's the case, then it's your school (Science dept or exams office) that have screwed up, not the exam board.

Knowsabitabouteducation Fri 12-Oct-12 21:09:50

Reading over the thread again....

You need to check when she did each of her exams. There are four modules - Biology, Chemistry, Physics and a Controlled Assessment.

Did she do her examined modules early, with only the CA submitted in June?

If so, she will not have satisfied the 40% rule, which I think others have said and is consistent with what is written in the OP.

Basically, 2 modules have to be taken at the same time as cashing in, and the marks for these modules count.

We use Edexcel and I did some training with them about a year ago - around the time of the first modules of the new specification. The examiner said that a disturbing number of schools had entered students for Bio, Chem, Phys modules for November exams. These were schools that got off the ground running with the new specs, which were only properly accredited in the spring - yet they did not grasp the 40% rule.

Perhaps the OP's DD is in a similar situation?

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 21:11:59

sounds about right knowsabitabout

Knowsabitabouteducation Fri 12-Oct-12 21:12:12

atruth - the rule is 40%.

In science, where the modules are equally weighted, this works out as 50%, ie two of the four modules have to be taken at cash-in.

It will get simpler when everything is linear.

Same principle though right? It's nothing 'new' so threatening legal action against AQA isn't going to work?

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 21:18:07

but its new to me and no one has explained anything to me as to why my dd, who got 3 Cs in the exams she took this summer now dont count.

i dont get it.

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