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Y7 and already done GCSE and A level Maths

(77 Posts)
Sally65 Sat 29-Jun-13 13:20:40

I am tremendously frustrated about not being able to find a suitable school for my DD aged 12. She was last in school at Christmas of Y2 but she stopped going due to refusal over boredom. Funny thing is her teacher at that point did not think she was at all smart since my daughter's boredom was so intense she just switched off entirely. Anyway, I let her stay home and play and then decided when she was turning 11 to get her caught up for secondary. In just 4 months doing no more than 30 minutes a day and working alone, my daughter completed the whole GCSE maths syllabus and begged me to let her take the exam. I reluctantly let her and she scored an A star this past January still aged 11. Then she studied by herself for A level maths and did C1, C2 and C3 and has probably done very well since he was getting 95% + on past papers. Her ability and standard in all subjects is very high. However, I cannot find any suitable school for her - no local school will accelerate her. I am a single mother in a difficult financial situation so I cannot afford the private sector. We live in NW London. Any ideas please.

ICanTotallyDance Sun 30-Jun-13 07:51:59

You can go for scholarships instead of bursaries (I know, they are very similar and at some schools one and the same) these will be easier to get at some schools because they are more about academics and less about money, however at some schools the bursaries will be worth more or you can try for both. There are fewer bright children than there are poor children. Proofreading this, I realise that statement could be offensive but I mean it as in it will be less competitive for your DD.

Here are some school suggestions.

St Mary's Calne offers 13+ scholarships for academics, sports, music, choral, and all-rounders (sorry this doesn't make grammatical sense). It is a girls school. Friends sent their DD there and if they didn't offer a subject they brought in tutors so she could study it. Very supportive.

Wycome Abbey- for 13+ you would have to enrol NOW. Good school. Scholarships are only worth 5% but they offer means tested bursaries.

Cheltenham- for 13+ you would have to be applying ASAP. Scholarships available for 15% off fees at 11, 12, 13 and 16+ and means tested bursaries can be applied for as well.

St Swithurn's- you would have to apply around August/September. Scholarships are 20% and bursaries are available. Again, lovely school.

Princess Helena College: Very nice, quite small. I am not sure if their bursaries are only for clergy and armed forces or open to all, but available at 13+ and very friendly registrar who welcomes enquiries.

There are heaps more schools, for example try this list.

Schools will snap your daughter up once they hear what she is capable of. Sorry these are all boarding, I wrote if before I saw your location.

Around Harrow, I have heard of St. Helen's which has a very positive inspection report but I have not really considered the school so looked into it. They offer scholarships and bursaries but their main admissions points are 11+ and 16+.

There is also Peterborough and St. Margaret which seems ok but doesn't have a sixth form (40% A*-A at GCSEs).

What you would get in (the right) private school is a tailored timetable that allows her to complete classes to her level (even if that means some classes at the local uni/with Yr 13/with a tutor) and also gives her a sense of belonging in her own year group.

You need to be upfront with the schools. Don't enquire "will you be offering bursaries for 2014 13+?"

Say, "my daughter, currently year 7, has completed her A level in mathematics and is advanced in many other subjects. She is not being challenged enough at home/at her current school and I want to know if you would do a better job. What could you offer my daughter?"

Obviously not those words. If they seems interested, mention you would need a bursary. Perhaps try again with NLCS?

Also, this is a bit cheeky, if she is home schooled you could re-enter her for Year 7 at these schools to get the entry bursaries/scholarships and then have her accelerated to year 8 or 9 grin.

Do be careful with accelerating her more than one year beyond her age group. It becomes difficult socially and I know that's what you're worried about from your post. My older sister was accelerated and found it a bit tricky from about Year 11 onwards (although she was bullied from Year 3 or so until Year 8 so she wasn't a social butterfly). She hit her social stride at university but the no drinking/can't go to movie nights/can't get a part time job etc made it hard for her.

englishteacher78 Sun 30-Jun-13 07:53:26

I teach at grammar school we don't usually accelerate but they often do UKMT maths challenge.
One of my form scored so highly he's off to a maths summer school which he is very excited about. I think secondary school might be the time to add more breadth to your dc's education - grammar schools are awesome though (not biased at all wink).

richmal Sun 30-Jun-13 08:24:53

englishteacher78, if a child were to join year 7 with GCSE in maths, what would the grammar school teach them over the following five years? Would they go on to the A level or just repeat GCSE?

meditrina Sun 30-Jun-13 08:46:04

It'll be far too late for bursaries for this September, and as OP says DD is already 12 then she'll be going in to year 8 which won't have schoarships on offer.

It would be better to try again for year 9, at schools which have an intake at that point as they are likely to have both scholarships and money for new bursaries budgeted for at that point. This will need action, and fast - as some of the schools listed above make their 13+ offers in year 7.

Have you actually applied to any state schools. You'll need to make an in-year application , and see what vacancies there are in your area. As it's London, there may be some churn of school places, but you may find that the schools you like best are full - in which case, you need to find out waiting list arrangements. It might be worth finding out now where you can secure a place from your current address.

Would you move house? You'd still have the issue of schools being already full, but if you moved right next door to one you liked, then at least you'd be high on the waiting list.

Have you sought out summer schools or enrichment programmes for maths? The Royal Institute might've worth a look.

meditrina Sun 30-Jun-13 08:48:56

Info on Royal Institution mathematics masterclasses

CarpeVinum Sun 30-Jun-13 08:49:05

Talk to your LA. I know they fund places at schools like InterHigh and PeriPlus where there is need or a child can't be persuaded to go or settle in school.

Interhigh I know for certain would let her place by ability not age. They are putting my very average son up two years for Spanish becuase he has a lingusitic advantage rather than let him plod along unstretched with his own agegroup.

ThreeBeeOneGee Sun 30-Jun-13 09:05:12

There is a possibility in the state sector; Watford Girls' Grammar. In Harrow, you might be in the right postcode for the outer catchment area. They do take girls later than the beginning of Y7 if there are unusual circumstances, and this might count.

englishteacher78 Sun 30-Jun-13 09:06:23

It's not something we've had to address before. But next September we will be in that situation, not sure how they're dealing with it in Maths yet.

ThreeBeeOneGee Sun 30-Jun-13 09:25:45

Just had a look at the WGGS admissions area: it includes the following postcodes:
HA3 6
HA5 1 to 5
HA6 1 to 3
HA7 3 and 4

Moominmammacat Sun 30-Jun-13 09:35:10

My DS says he knows a girl who got 100% bursary for Habs ...

Talkinpeace Sun 30-Jun-13 09:41:50

Please also remember that many of the kids who do astoundingly at Maths in their preteens are technically a prodigy rather than a genius.
In that by the age of 19, the remainder of the top 0.1% will be level with them again.

Which again comes back to the point where you need to get her into an education environment where other people are better than her at some things.
as far as possible get her in with people going through puberty at the same time as her.

I too was bumped up a year at school and in the long run it did me no favours at all.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Sun 30-Jun-13 09:47:37

What about Bedales? Excellent school and offer scolarships and bursaries from 13.

Talkinpeace Sun 30-Jun-13 10:05:17

I suspect that the 'social' side of Bedales would not fit a seriously bright London based child without the moneyed background

richmal Sun 30-Jun-13 10:08:35

I wonder how many children do now take GCSE and A level maths early. It seems to me the number is increasing.

Talkinpeace I don't think it is a sign of anything other than a child having been taught how to do maths at a younger age than normal. However if they have got to that level, they should be taught at that level.

Talkinpeace Sun 30-Jun-13 10:13:15

Maths is intuitive. If you "get" it, its easy. Most people have to be taught. The numbers of kids who "get" probably does not change much over the years, but the press covers the stories from all over the country now.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Sun 30-Jun-13 10:14:49

Talkin surely she won't be the only one though. At this point I would be more interested in anywhere my child could receive an education which was suited to her needs rather than worrying about that kind of thing when it's not even an issue.

Talkinpeace Sun 30-Jun-13 10:22:58

Education works best when children are socially settled. When they have people to chat to between classes with whom they share reference points - hence the problem with moving age groups.
Its one of the reasons why scholarship and bursary kids at expensive schools have to be given extra support. If all the other kids at Bedales are going to the Med in the summer and you are going to Bognor, the comfort reference points that allow a child to fly academically are not there.
And in OPs case, her chile has been home ed for a while. Ensuring social comfort will be essential.
Speaking as a former school bully, the misfits are the targets.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Sun 30-Jun-13 10:25:49

I understand the issues surrounding scholarships Talkin. My own DD went to an independent school on a scholarship. The fact is that you will never escape the problems surrounding social growth in an environment where the majority are better off financially, most private schools have these issue.....but that does not mean you should forget about certain options.

youarewinning Sun 30-Jun-13 10:37:37

I know nothing about bursaries/ scholarships and deadlines for these.

BUT, I would imagine a your DD is an exceptional case then rules maybe not applied in the same way. Indie schools may offer a full scholorship for academia. If not then the LEA should be funding schooling for your DD tailored to meet her needs.

LEA's fund indie specialist schools for pupils with SEN - which effectively is what your DD has.

Good luck

ragged Sun 30-Jun-13 10:38:38

I must be blind. Where does OP say her daughter is a very high standard at all subjects? I can only see talk about maths. Not biology, DT, cookery, drama, PE, art, history, music, etc. Has she finished GCSEs or A-levels for those too, then?

I don't see why OP wouldn't just continue as she is. Guides is very good value, OP, cheap way to have a complete package of sociallife activities. They usually have a bursary system if you're skint, too. Scouts is similar but they can't subsidise subs as easily. Amateur Drama is also very intensely social. Most girls that sort of age are very into something like Scouts, Minecraft, dance or drama.

bico Sun 30-Jun-13 10:41:39

ragged it is in the OP's first post ^ Her ability and standard in all subjects is very high. ^

bico Sun 30-Jun-13 10:41:59


Her ability and standard in all subjects is very high

youarewinning Sun 30-Jun-13 10:42:11

Ragged we are taking it from this ^ Her ability and standard in all subjects is very high. However, I cannot find any suitable school for her - no local school will accelerate her.^ in the OP.

TBF though it does only say 'high' not an actual figure of comparison to her peers.

morethanpotatoprints Sun 30-Jun-13 10:48:23

Hello OP.

I don't have any suggestions but wondered why you want/need to send her back to school. I too H.ed and am finding the benefits are tremendous.
As she already has the maths, the other few subjects she would need for uni entrance could easily be done at home, especially now that coursework and some controlled assessment has gone, giving more choice at GCSE. Also if it is work related there are several H.ed parents I know who work in between H.ed
Well done and good luck to your dd whatever you decide to do.

ragged Sun 30-Jun-13 10:52:12

okay, fair enough. I am blind smile.
Still, thrice impressed that she's ace at things like drama, music, DT & PE, too.

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