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Experiences with changing schools?

(17 Posts)
relishingrelaxation Mon 13-Jul-15 18:53:52

My dd is 16 and will be changing schools in September for sixth form. This is a design that hasn't been taken lightly and a lot of consideration and decisions have been made in the process. The school dd was at was a private school which offered sixth form however she did not wish to stay due to various problems and the way they were dealt with by the school. We applied for 3 other private schools in March and got correspondence back from all, about contacting them when she got her results and a decision would be made from there. There wasn't really any other information given other than this as we also missed the open nights in January due to a family situation. I suppose to summarise my multitude of questions; does anyone have any experience of the process of changing schools for sixth form?
I have also been thinking, it is more than likely she will have to go for interviews, right? Will this not mean she will have to decide on a school there and then on results day and decline the other two, go for the interview at the chosen school and then what happens if she is not successful and does not get a place at the school she chose?

Sorry if this was a big, paragraph of gibberish nonsense, it's just a confusing process and unfortunately it hadn't been made any easier by the fact we didn't get to open nights.

Any advice/ experiences would be greatly appreciated smile

noblegiraffe Mon 13-Jul-15 19:03:31

Phone the schools and ask them, if they haven't already broken up for the summer. I'd have thought they'd have interviewed already.

relishingrelaxation Mon 13-Jul-15 19:11:04

All the schools are off now, my own stupidity as I should've done it sooner, its just been a hectic few months so haven't really had the chance. I would have thought it common sense to have the interviews earlier on as I would imagine it would be very rushed leaving it to after the results, but apparently not confused

titchy Mon 13-Jul-15 20:45:14

I hate to say it but I think you've left it far too late, private schools will naturally prioritise their own students and would only interview a prospective applicant if one of their own failed to meet their usual requirements.

Do you have a back up plan? State sixth form (although again a lot of these will have closed to new applicants now) or staying at current school?

Millymollymama Mon 13-Jul-15 21:12:43

Some 6th forms will recruit at the last minute. I can think of two you could just walk into. Not very selective and just wanted Bs and preferably As for the subjects to be studied. I would get running but the schools I know will have broken up already. Someone might pick up the phone or answer an email. They will have staff in for results day but I would get hold of the admissions officers before then.

relishingrelaxation Mon 13-Jul-15 21:13:07

In March I rang up to order prospectuses and was told to ring up with results on results day, I specifically asked each school how many new pupils they would expect for sixth form, as this was something that dd was curious to know as she said it would alleviate any anxiousness knowing she wouldn't be the only "new" one starting, and each said they leave 6 or 7 places open for external pupils. That was the information we were given and then a letter from one of the schools explaining what we already knew, after we had applied. It wasn't until recently, that my dd brought up the whole interview clashes thing and wasn't something that I had thought about until now.

We have applied from relatively early on, so I hope that it wouldn't be a problem because dd does not have a back up plan and she has completely ruled out staying at her current school.

I suppose to put it plainly, is it ok to have applied to more than one school for sixth form?

Thanks for the advice so far btw smile

titchy Mon 13-Jul-15 21:23:26

Perfectly normal to apply for more than one. Dd had two offers having applied last summer and only just turned one down.

I really would get a back up sixth form application in quick though. There may be 20 or 30 other kids after those half dozen places.

State ones won't have broken up yet...

SeenSheen Mon 13-Jul-15 22:30:29

It used to be that you were made an offer following an interview but based on your predicted grades. I'm not sure whether that gets withdrawn (bit like uni) if If your actual results were way off.

My DD had offers from many and kept two right up to the end.

titchy Mon 13-Jul-15 22:33:08

Yes offers are subject to grades achieved at GCSE. Fail to meet those grades and your offer is withdrawn. You might be offered an alternative programme but no guarantees.

relishingrelaxation Tue 14-Jul-15 12:58:04

Thank you all for the advice so far, it's been a big help!
I suppose it really is a case of waiting until results and then see what happens. When filling out the application form we had to put the results she got in her mocks, they were very varied and she missed a couple of exams due to a bereavement, but that was all taken into account. She worked very hard for her GCSE's and is capable of very good marks, so only time will tell.

titchy Tue 14-Jul-15 13:10:22

I don't think it is a case of wait and see actually.

I think it's a case of wait and hope they select her as one of the six, rather than one of the remaining 14 applicants, but have a state option in the bag just in case.

I think a wait and see attitude may well come back to bite your child on the arse and leave her with nowhere to go.

jeanne16 Tue 14-Jul-15 13:38:19

It depends where you are based. If you are in London, there are lots of private 6th form colleges that are centrally based. They are quite large and take lots of pupils (and provided you can pay the fees, you are pretty much in). I would phone them again this week as Admissions staff will still be in, just to check what the admissions process is.

relishingrelaxation Tue 14-Jul-15 16:51:44

titchy we have already applied for 3 schools (which I thought would be more than enough), who all require the GCSE results before they make a decision. I will try and ring tomorrow and see what the score is with the admissions process and ask the relevant questions. DD completely ruled out state schools as an option, for whatever reason, despite the fact that I have said it would be good to have one to fall back on just in case. She didn't listen and made it clear that these were the three schools she wanted to apply for. At the end of the day, she is nearly 17 and finished with compulsory education, it was her choice to want to move and whilst I'll support her in whatever road she takes and want her to achieve what she I know she is capable of, I can't force her.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 14-Jul-15 19:02:28

She has not finished with compulsory education. From the first of September she must remain in some form of education till she is 18, but this could be an apprenticeship.
I don't know where you are in the country, but all the local private schools made sixth form conditional offers in February and held sixth form induction week about three weeks ago.
I would be concerned that the tell us when you have got results would be a we will only consider you if we have either a dramatic fallout or you are truly exceptional.

LIZS Tue 14-Jul-15 19:06:11

Presumably her current school is still a fallback , or did you give notice? Dc school has a larger intake at 6th form than you quote, but many are from overseas. Do they all cater for her subject choices?

titchy Tue 14-Jul-15 19:07:41

Agree with lonecat - contact us when you have your results is a polite brush off I suspect. That's why I stress having a back up plan.

relishingrelaxation Tue 14-Jul-15 19:57:56

I probably should have said that we are in Wales, were you can leave school at 16. Completely forgot that it was different in England. We haven't mentioned to dc's current school yet, so if the worst came to the worst, there is always that option.
LIZS the schools offer subjects that her current school does not,for example psychology, which is another reason that enforced her desire to move.

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