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GCSE taken in YR10 Maths and Science

(51 Posts)
sugarandsweet Tue 10-Sep-13 13:56:25

So my son who took Maths and science in year 10 got B's and C's when he was predicted A's and B's. I'm told by the science teacher its because the grade bandings have changed this year. She said he was 4 marks off an A but still got a C my first thought it how ridiculously tight that grading is but also why didn't the school make it clearer how the grading could change and affect a grade from a A to a C.

A very upset son going into year 11.

purpleroses Tue 10-Sep-13 14:06:40

That's worrying. My DS's school has just started preparing the top set to do maths a year early (DS is Y9) but I doubt they'll all get As. Is he able to re-do it this year? Seems unnecessary to entre a year young unless they're confident of an A.

lainiekazan Tue 10-Sep-13 14:12:04

Same here.

Ds got worse grades than predicted for GCSEs taken in year 10. He was only 14 when he took the exams and he is very despondent that his performance could affect his future chances.

sugarandsweet Tue 10-Sep-13 14:13:38

They do it in units in his school. He's in the top set and like I say was predicted a's and b's but has come away with B's and C's.

He can resit but will have to take his science ones in June so will have an extra 3 exams on top of the ones he's already go to take.

sugarandsweet Tue 10-Sep-13 14:14:17

I don't agree with them being done early like this.

titchy Tue 10-Sep-13 14:36:41

Presumably it was Core Science that he took? I think that's quite common as it's the easiest paper, and means they don't have those three papers to do at the end of year 11 when they're doing the next three (or six if they do triple).

TBH the Core is the easiest paper and a student predicted a B should easily achieve an A for this one. Did he revise?

Doing Maths a year early is crap unless they are guaranteed at least an A, so sympathies....

I thought everything was linear now, so what do you mean they do them in units?

sugarandsweet Tue 10-Sep-13 15:20:08

he was predicted an A/B so should have achieved this. The science teacher put this down to the grade boundaries changing this year. He reckons he revised perhaps not enough.

They did their maths in units through year 10. 3 units. He wanted to do linear but was told he couldn't sad Not sure what is going to have with this mark or whether he'll be able to take again. I'll have to speak to his teacher.

feeling pretty overwhelmed at the moment tbh

Kez100 Tue 10-Sep-13 16:06:47

My son was the opposite!

Predicted a C and got a B (being made up of C internal work, B in Biology and Chemistry exams and A in Physics).

I think they were harder papers though - the questions required a lot more writing now than they did in my daughters time (in 2011!). He says he is currently being treated like God in his science set!

Kez100 Tue 10-Sep-13 16:08:46

He sat Foundation Maths and got the C - will do higher paper next year. He is pleased as this gets him out of the foundation sets which were driving him mad because he has suddenly improved a lot in Maths and was getting bored.

sugarandsweet Tue 10-Sep-13 16:13:57

Well done to him :-)

Kez100 Tue 10-Sep-13 18:36:40

Just asked him what revision resources he used for Science :

BBC Bitesize (for his exam board) and revision books for that exam paper syllabus (he thinks they were by Lonsdale but has given them back in so isn't sure). I have looked on Amazon and there are some Lonsdale ones, so he is probably right.

He said he didn't do any past papers (apart from in school in mock exams) because the new syllabus and written answers meant there weren't very many to choose from. At least for additional science next year there will be a couple more.

He thinks they have to sit all the exams for Additional Science next June, where he sat Chemistry and Biology Core Science in January 2013 and Physics in June 2013. He thinks that is why he did better - apart from Maths, he only sat Physics this summer.

poppydoppy Tue 10-Sep-13 18:42:44

With AQA you HAVE to do science GCSE in year 10

RaspberryLemonPavlova Tue 10-Sep-13 21:59:47

I thought with triple the two units for each subject had to be done in the same session, which usually results in six exams at the end of Y11. Although DS has a friend who has done Biology in units over Y9 and Y10, leaving 2 to do at the end of this year (he could do units because he started 2 years ago).

Double science seems to be an exam each year, but I didn't think it was compulsory.

DS did Maths (linear) this year and English Lit, and achieved his predicted grades. He's quite pleased to have those out of the way at the end of Y10.

bsc Tue 10-Sep-13 22:02:31

Havent' they done it early, so they can re-sit next year if necessary? confused I thought that was the whole point of doing them in Y10?

purpleroses Tue 10-Sep-13 22:12:29

Havent' they done it early, so they can re-sit next year if necessary? That's the thing though - I'd assume the do resit if they get a D or lower, but a C is a pass grade. That's all the school really needs them to get for their figures they publish.

But if the DC is looking at going on to university, especially if it's a competitive one, or to do something that requires good maths, then a C may well NOT be sufficient. It may not even be sufficient to get them onto the A levels they want to do.

OP - has anyone suggested to your DS that he redoes it next year?

Whathaveiforgottentoday Tue 10-Sep-13 22:22:44

The AQA grade boundaries have been put up a bit but this wouldn't have taken him from an A to a C so somebody must be confused on this. It may have meant a drop from B to C though.
You don't have to do the exams in year 10 but most schools do otherwise you end up sitting 6 exams in year 11 (or 9 if doing triple). To retake, he would need to retake all 3 exams plus the ISA.

WorrySighWorrySigh Tue 10-Sep-13 22:30:31

Even with good grades I would heartily recommend that any parent with a student having taken GCSE maths early look at how their son or daughter is going to continue moving forward with the subject if there is a possibility of taking Maths at A level.

Even if the school doesnt offer anything itself then do look at the possibilities of continuing studies as a twilight subject.

We have learnt this the hard way. DD took maths early and achieved an A but then only did statistics for a year before starting Maths A level. She struggled at AS and is now having to look at resits.

The school had intended that A grade students would resit to achieve A* but sadly the Maths teacher was asked to leave after having a massive temper tantrum at one of her resit classes.

longingforsomesleep Tue 10-Sep-13 23:10:41

Worry - that's exactly what happened with ds1. Did maths a year early and got an A. His set was expected to then start on AS maths. But he wanted to do a particular subject which he couldn't if he did AS maths so he took statistics in year 11 then started AS maths in year 12 (as he'd always planned to). Nobody warned us about the damage of effectively having a year off maths. He struggled and has ended up with a D for A level.

lainiekazan Wed 11-Sep-13 07:48:56

Same here, but the other way round.

Ds has done Statistics in Year 10, so a year off maths before Year 11. He regrets doing this as he would rather have concentrated on Maths and he struggled a bit with Statistics.

intitgrand Wed 11-Sep-13 08:50:37

The grade boundaries move every sitting to reflect how easy or difficult the paper is .A lot of work goes into standardising papers between boards and between sittings and this is why exam results take so long to come back.The teacher is talking rubbish and A should be just as easy to get whichever sitting

TallulahMcFey Wed 11-Sep-13 09:09:17

On the other hand, my daughter did GCSE maths in year 10 and got an A*, followed by AS in year 11, getting an A. Her school only put the top 12 children in for it early out of a year of 240 and they could only do AS if they got an A or A* at GCSE so at the time I was quite happy with it. The consequence was, that by the end of year 12 she had an A at A2, being one if her strongest subjects. However, when she applied to uni, the top unis (studying law) didn't count any subject any A levels not taken in one sitting towards their entry requirements meaning that she had to get a further AAA at A level (which luckily she did). With my next child, I would say not to take maths early as there is no benefit. I had considered it might be worth doing it early but holding back a module to complete in year 13 so the A level can only be cashed in, in that year and then qualify. All her year (I think) sat a science in year 10 and another at year 11. I don't know about resits but if in that situation I would pay for a result myself if I had to. I agree that top unis may well want a B at GCSE and it is definitely worth consideration.

FeetUpUntilChristmas Wed 11-Sep-13 09:28:01

This is why IMO taking exams early is just not worth it. My DD1 was top set for everything but the school didn't have a take early exams policy so she gained A* across the board in maths, stats and sciences. She was not ready in Y10 to take these exams and i am sure her grades would have been lower, she had the intelligence but not the confidence.

lainiekazan Wed 11-Sep-13 09:42:12

If I had 10 dcs I might just about get it right by the time the last one came to go through the school system.

I didn't want ds to do any GCSEs early, as he is the youngest in the year as well as having to do the GCSE in one year. I'm sure he could have done better if the exams he took had been taken in a year's time.

schilke Wed 11-Sep-13 12:19:38

Ds1 did AQA core science in June in year 10. His target was an A and he got C. He was very disappointed. He struggles with the ISAs. He was told in June his ISA was C, so he thought his target was in trouble. He hoped for a B. Last week he discovered his ISA was in fact D....this brought him down to a C overall. So close to a B.

He now thinks he can't do chemistry A Level because he's not good enough. He was only a couple of UMS points off an A for the chemistry paper, so I'm hoping he'll change his mind in time. His confidence is really dented and he thinks he won't hit any of his targets.

hellsbells99 Wed 11-Sep-13 12:42:10

At DD2's school, approx. 50 took maths at the end of year 10 (2 top sets). They will spend this year doing algebra etc ready for AS level in the 6th form. The remainder of her year are taking the gcse in November (including any retakes from the top 2 sets) so still early entry in year 11 - they will either retake, do statistics, do finance or if any want to carry on to AS level, they will do algebra etc. for the rest of the year.
I have just found out the DD2 will now be taking English Language this November due to the change removing the spoken controlled assessments (which they have already done) from their gcse if they take it next June. So some of you may have this to look forward to as well! Sciences she will not take until the end of year 11, although those doing double science have done the core science in year 10.

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