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Year 11 parents evening - feel gutted for dd

(64 Posts)
briss Sat 30-Jan-16 08:23:10

She's always wanted to do physio but science teachers said last night that she'd be lucky to get Bs in the three sciences and that physio was very hard to get into. Said she should start thinking of other ways to get into it rather than the 'traditionally academic' route.

Two years ago they said she should definitely do triple science and was one of their best students. Now they admitted she should have done double science and want to enter her for foundation papers for some of the units.

Dd has worked very hard - but the message we got from all teachers was that she worked very hard but didn't have the 'intellectual maturity' to get very good marks in exams.

She feels crushed and so do I a bit. I encouraged her to do triple science and pursue her physio dream and now I feel I've led her up the garden path.

It wasn't all gloomy - history was excellent and English and RE also good so maybe her strengths lie in humanities.

Just like some advice on how now to boost her confidence (which isn't great at the best of times).

I know the school were doing the right thing but I feel a bit sad that they hadn't seen this earlier. Also I think I've really banged on about how brilliant uni is and now I think if she's not uni material I need to stfu about how great it is!

PerspicaciaTick Sat 30-Jan-16 08:28:11

Could you arrange some science specific tutoring to boost her confidence and maybe clarify how she can approach her work more maturely?
It does seem unfair that the school have noticed this so late in the day.

defineme Sat 30-Jan-16 08:35:16

That does sound tough. I think she could do with an inspirational visit to a careers library or at least some careers books. I look through the secondary school careers library a lot and there are tons of different jobs with real life examples of people getting them through all sorts of routes. Perhaps she needs to do some serious thinking about her strengths too- if it's humanties she's better at. Better she finds this out now rather than 6th form. She might be inspired by 6th form college prospectuses for courses she's not thought may not be out of the question... there are lots of courses out there at newer unis with lower entry requirements and good post degreee employment stats.
Try and get her to think of this as a hiccup rather than a disaster. She is much more than a science gcse grade. She is her personal qualities, a daughter, extra curricular stuff, her passions... all sorts of things!

TwinklyMusic Sat 30-Jan-16 08:35:23

I second speciality tutoring. The right one to one tutor can turn the situation on its head. Try the 'First Tutors' website.

Kuppenbender Sat 30-Jan-16 09:27:28

Two things; first of all she need to use this motivation to up her game. A little extra tuition might help, but single-minded determination can take you a long way. There are successful people from all walks of life who wouldn't be where they are today if they'd been limited by their teachers' expectations.

Secondly, by all means encourage your DC to excel academically and get to a good university, but not at the expense of looking down on alternative routes into a profession. Explore all available options.

In many ways your DD is lucky in that she has a particular and realistically achievable career in mind. She needs to hold that thought, work hard and see where that takes her. This is no time for despondency, no doors are closed to her yet. Everything is still there for the taking.

LIZS Sat 30-Jan-16 09:32:51

Would n't it be better for her to do double science than triple at foundation level. Foundation caps her potential grade at a c. With 2 decent grades she could still do science A levels or perhaps a vocational route such as an NVQ / Access course would be a route worth looking into.

briss Sat 30-Jan-16 10:12:48

Thank you. Lots to think about. Apparently if she takes one unit at foundation level it's still possible to get a B by getting good marks in the other 2 units. She obtained As in her ISAs. I have a maths tutor booked for half term and apparently she also tutors sciences so will talk to her. I would never 'look down my nose' at other entries into a profession but am not well informed about them. Dd and I will find out!

BabyGanoush Sat 30-Jan-16 10:15:53

She may do better than the school think

briss Sat 30-Jan-16 13:30:15

I've been reading up on BTECs and actually the health and social care BTEC might really appeal to her. No exams! If she combined that with two A levels history/psychology I think that might be enough to get her onto a degree course.

areyoubeingserviced Sat 30-Jan-16 14:12:31

You should use this opportunity to teach your dd about resilience and perseverance.
If she wants something she has to continue to strive.
Definitely explore the tutor option.
My love of maths was due to an inspirational teacher.

thesandwich Sat 30-Jan-16 14:19:08

Get her to look at the icould website- excellent careers info/ videos etc which may give other ideas. Tutoring is great to build her confidence. Also nhs careers website. Good luck

balletgirlmum Sat 30-Jan-16 14:27:40

My dd also wants to go into physio & she's just about to choose her options so I'm following this thread with interest.

She will chsnge schools for a levels & the school she will probably go to says they will accept her for science a levels if she gets at least a B at double science. However she wants to do triple. Problem being she has had poor science teaching in the past & is trying to use cgp books to fill knowledge gaps.

Did your dds teachers give any indication as to what the alternative routes into physio are? My dd wants to sum for a career as a dancer first then go back to uni as a mature student so I'm interested in this.

TeenAndTween Sat 30-Jan-16 14:30:52

DD did double science last year.

We found that doing lots of old papers during the revision period really helped her understand where marks were being lost and which topics she didn't understand fully. Luckily I was generally in a position to help explain concepts to her which helped a lot too.

Often she knew the info but didn't realise what the question was asking for. So we learned to look for key words, and if in doubt write down what she knew about them for the 6 mark questions.

For the Physics 2 paper (edexcel) there were a lot of marks to be had just for being able to identify required equation from list at front of booklet, rearrange equation and substitute in correctly. By having a massive blitz on this we got her mark on that particular paper up from a C to an A without her particularly understanding the actual physics any better.

Looking through her mock papers might give you an idea how to proceed.

(None of this helps with whether or not science A levels are right for her, but might help with achieving the required GCSE grades at least)

briss Sat 30-Jan-16 14:33:43

No they didnt.

If you want to get in by the masters route it is as competitive I believe.

I know cardiff made my friends dd an offer of AAA* - its essential to have at least Biology as a science A level pref Chemistry too although not essential.

From a quick google you can still get onto a degree course with a BTEC Science plus 2 a levels but the BTEC needs to be DDD.

Im rapidly going off the idea for dd - she has a work shadowing thing with a physio in our local hospital in a month or so so we will see what happens then

JackandDiane Sat 30-Jan-16 14:37:32

EXTRA TUITION! What are they doing to make her improve?
What is her FFT target? If she is under that, ( based on KS2 SATS and stuff) then its for THEM to do something

JackandDiane Sat 30-Jan-16 14:38:58

This is SCHOOL'S issue to sort out.

Go back in- just you. Make an appointment to ask the HoD to meet with you and say what you can do as a team to improve this. They cant just say ' oh she isnt clever enough'. If they are unwilling then get a list of stuff for her to show the tutor.

balletgirlmum Sat 30-Jan-16 14:39:19

There is a possibility that dd might only do 2 a levels alongside a Level 6 diploma in dance you see. The dance diploma can then be topped up to a degree after a further year.

I guess she could do an extra a level at an FE college post career/when she's 'resting'

I don't know anything about the masters route.

JackandDiane Sat 30-Jan-16 14:39:50

PLus tbh anyone planning a career so rigidly at 16....
Just get her to get the best grades. Leave the whole job thing. Her job might not even have been invented yet

LentilStew Sat 30-Jan-16 14:41:04

I was told to drop history at GCSE as I was, according to the teacher, not academic enough. I was predicted grade E. I got an A then an A at Alevel and went on to study history at an RG university gaining a 2:1. I have since done both a pgce and an MA.

The teacher's comments made me up my game and prove him wrong. Does she think she's up to getting As? If she genuinely believes she can then 1:1 tutoring could make s dramatic difference both to her scores and her self confidence. However, if she's disappointed but feels she really is struggling and couldn't do more then perhaps encourage her to consider playing to her strengths in the humanities.

As an aside, I know a physio who took a nursing degree through clearing (20yrs ago) as she just missed her grades for physio. She qualified, worked for 2yrs then did a post grad 2yr course which qualified her as a physio. So a long way round but 20yrs on I doubt anyone cares that she got a C in biology Alevel instead of the required B. I know someone else, much younger so more recent who wanted to do midwifery but dropped a grade and they wouldn't take her. She also did nursing instead then a 2yr midwifery course straight after graduation.

bloodyteenagers Sat 30-Jan-16 15:07:23

To get onto a physiotherapy degree course you usually need two or three A levels, including a biological science and/or PE, along with five GCSEs (grades A-C), including English language, maths and at least one science.

You may also be able to get onto a course with alternative qualifications, including:

BTEC, HND or HNC which includes biological science
relevant NVQ
science-based access course
equivalent Scottish or Irish qualifications
a previous degree or a full practising qualification in a related area.

Although obviously check with the uni she wants to apply to.

So from the triple as long as she gets one A-C she should be fine.

She could also consider a physio assistant/support worker. Requirements are different and there is also the option to do an apprenticeship for this..
Then with the experience she has gained as an assistant she could then go to uni as a mature student to become a physio.

But I am no Science teacher. It's what the physio's advised my daughter when she was considering becoming a physio.

MadeinBelfast Sat 30-Jan-16 15:18:25

Would it be possible for her to do double science instead? If they moved her into a double class at this stage she would hopefully get some very focused revision time and would obviously have less to cover. I know students who have done this and ended up with 2 A grades rather than the predicted 3Cs for triple.

balletgirlmum Sat 30-Jan-16 15:19:48

It seems unfair that PE is counted as a valid option (my dd hates PE) but not dance.

balletgirlmum Sat 30-Jan-16 15:21:07

OP - how does your dd feel about science? Is it a subject she enjoys or is it a means towards an end?

LIZS Sat 30-Jan-16 15:23:50

Surely you can do dance as the activity within pe. Also a dance btec would count.

balletgirlmum Sat 30-Jan-16 15:30:23

Dance is one option but you have to do a team sport & something else as well. Her current school don't offer GCSE PE & the school she may go for a levels to don't offer dance as an option within it Anyway. The level of dance she will be doing is way beyond anything offered as part of PE, or indeed GCSE dance.

Dd won't be doing a Level 3 btech though - but she might do a Level 6 diploma in professional dance alongside 2 a levels if she doesn't change school.

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