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DD sitting GCSE's. can someone explain to me about grade boundaries?

(8 Posts)
CouthyMowEatingBraiiiiinz Sun 04-Nov-12 02:14:54

My DD has SN's. She was in bottom sets until the end of Y9, when she was moved out of bottom sets in all subjects, to bottom middle in some, and top middle in others.

I know she has got her first Controlled assessment after half term, in Catering. Can anyone explain to me what GCSE's are like right now, and how I can help DD get better marks?

She gets 25% extra time in exams, and a reader, but I have NO idea if she gets this for CA's too.

How would I know?

And how do you find out what exam board the GCSE's are with, and what their grade boundaries will be?

I want to know best how to help her to drag some of her GCSE's up to 'C' grades, which she needs for the college course she wants to do.

She is in Y10. She has just 'twigged' school, IYKWIM. For the first time ever, she gets on with her homework and is working hard. Until now, she had meltdowns over homework constantly (one of her issues is Autism). That has gone. She is really working hard, and I want to help her.

Astelia Sun 04-Nov-12 02:42:04

To find out which exam board and course you need to e-mail each of her teachers and ask. Contact the Learning Support dept to find out what extra time she is entitled to in the different exams and assessments.

Ask the teachers what they recommend you do and explain what she needs for her college course. They will have some ideas as they know your DD and they will want her to achieve the best grades she possibly can. They don't teach her one-to-one so can't put as much time into her as you can at home individually- that is why parents and tutors can help quite a bit.

The teachers might recommend books you can buy or they might send home extra work that you can go over with DD.

Kez100 Sun 04-Nov-12 03:31:43

What exam board and what specification - ask the school
Which have controlled assessments - ask the school or look up online once you know the answer to 1 above
How you can support your child - ask the school teachers in each subject
Boundries - for specifications that have been around for a while you can look them up in the past results section but don't assume they will stay the same - they are designed to vary and we all know, in the case of Enhlish this year, some changed a lot. They are decided by the exam board after all results are in - so no one ever actually knows until they are published.

I helped my daughter with past papers. I bought some and downloaded others from the exam boards online. Maths questions she struggled with (getting them wrong on past papers) I made up more for her myself as practice. Science we did the same. However, be careful to use relevant past papers and in today's fast moving exam world you may have to ask the school first which ones are the most relevant.

creamteas Sun 04-Nov-12 15:09:59

I have two DC with ASD in GCSE years (one in 10, one in 11). I requested a meeting with their form teacher and SENCO for each child to talk through the issues.

Their school is pretty good with general information anyway (exam boards, assessment details etc) so I already had this. But their form tutors had requested a progress report and details from each subject teacher. In the meeting, we went through subject by subject how they were doing, which level (foundation/higher), what special arrangements would be in place and what additional support would be offered in school and what would help at home.

I found it really helpful, and so did my DC, so would recommend it if your school is up for it.

44SoStartingOver Sun 04-Nov-12 15:12:53

The school is required to make available her access arrangements available for controlled assessments. She should also be aware she can ask to sit them in a smaller room and take rest breaks if that helps avoid meltdowns.

Loshad Sun 04-Nov-12 21:36:50

if she has 25% extra for exams, she gets that for the CAUs as well, school/individual teachers may need reminding of that fact.
You need to ask school what exam board they do for each subject, it will vary, eg my dept (science ) does AQA but other subjects in my school do ocr or edexcel. Then log onto exam board web sites and read the specifications etc, then you know what dd needs to know. You can check on how the subject is assessed as well.
past paper practice is invaluable, and these are available for free download from the exam board websites, as well as using suitable web sites for revision eg bbc bitesize is good for gcse science

CouthyMowEatingBraiiiiinz Sun 04-Nov-12 23:30:20

Thank you all. Her parents evening is coming up on the 21st, would it be better to ask these questions then? Tbh, though I have a SEN report sent home, it probably IS about time I collared the SenCo again as her IEP is due for updating.

Kez100 Mon 05-Nov-12 06:55:58

That is probably a good start. The questions can be quite repetitive and the answers won't necessarily be very straightforward because each subject differs, so I would take a list and write down the answers as it will be easy to forget otherwise. We get a full report in advance of parents evening and that often contains the exam board and syllabus name and CA structures, so some of the questions on your list may be answerable by that.

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