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losing your deposit

(17 Posts)
Grikes Sat 04-Jun-16 04:54:03

Is this true ?

If you do not give a terms notice you will lose not only your deposit but also be fined a term in lieu?

Unfortunately my friends at LMS will move to a different school. They were upset that the school did not live up to the glossy brochure.

They are very upset that they will also be charged for the move. Is there anything that can be done.

They are another example of thinking going to UK is the easy option.

In addition if you do only 5 GCSE can you move on to A levels?

regularbutpanickingabit Sat 04-Jun-16 06:09:53

The contract they signed will clearly state the terms and conditions for terminating their time st the school.
Yes, it is normal to insist on a term's notice or the equivalent sacrifice of fees and that will be upheld. This is to protect the school's income that will have been budgeted around. Can they not give notice and move after the term?

Second question - unlikely in most schools who will be submitting children for 8/9+ GCSEs and then narrowing that cohort to those best suited to A level study. Why are they only taking 5? If it is because they have arrived in the UK late in the GCSE process then the equivalent grades and individual assessment may be sufficient proof of ability to make the step up to A level. Otherwise it is unlikely a school will feel a child is capable of the more rigorous study required.

PettsWoodParadise Sat 04-Jun-16 08:21:42

Yes you will need to pay the term's fee. It isn't a fine but a contractual agreement.

I haven't heard of anyone doing just five GCSEs and then going onto doing A Levels. The latter are a massive step up from GCSEs so unless there were extenuating circumstances or some other reason eg five GCSEs plus a bunch of other qualifications it doesn't sound hopeful - but discuss with sixth form heads and colleges and get their expert input.

TeenAndTween Sat 04-Jun-16 09:40:21

The 6th form colleges round here (Hants) ask for minimum 5 A*-C to do A levels.
However for specific subjects there are generally minimum grade requirements, e.g. A in maths to do maths, B in English to do essay subject etc.

If someone was only capable of 5Cs that wouldn't be good for doing A levels. If they were capable of 10Bs but due to circumstances had only taken 5 GCSEs that I guess would be a different matter.

LIZS Sat 04-Jun-16 09:43:02

The deposit may be refunded against last term's fees, but only if you stay the full distance. Many aren't at all. Yes what you describe is normal.

LIZS Sat 04-Jun-16 09:48:09

Many independent schools require more than 5 Gcses passes to progress to 6th form, often expecting As in any subjects to be taken at A level. Anyone achieving less than 5 Gcses will struggle academically. English and Maths are required for a Level 3 course (A level, Btec, NVQ etc) so if not achieved now the student will be expected to resit or take an alternative course in them alongside another course.

mummytime Sat 04-Jun-16 09:55:22

The only people I have known have only 5 GCSE and then proceed to A'level have: been home educated OR arrived very late from abroad (year 11) OR been at Bedales and also studied the Bedales curriculum.

It is normal contract to either give 1 full terms notice or pay a term's fees in lieu of notice. I have to give 1/2 terms notice or pay a full term at my DCs music lessons.

People should always read their contracts and understand the terms, getting local advice if necessary.

Coconutty Sat 04-Jun-16 09:57:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AnotherNewt Sat 04-Jun-16 10:02:24

Yes, it's normal to specify a notice period when terminating a contract. If proper notice is not given, they payment in lieu of notice is a normal clause.

One term is pretty standard for private schools (and many disputes have been through the Courts without it ever AFAIK being adjudged an unreasonable amount of time).

(You can do A levels from only 5 GCSE, but as schools - whether private or state - and colleges all set their own 6th Form requirements, it may or may not be enough for particular institutions).

IndridCold Sat 04-Jun-16 10:40:04

They are another example of thinking going to UK is the easy option.

What does this even mean? Easy compared with what FGS?

It looks as your friends chose a school from its own marketing material and failed to do their research properly, and then signed a contract without reading and understanding it. Sorry if I sound snippy, but they can hardly expect other people to protect them from their own carelessness.

Grikes Sat 04-Jun-16 11:13:01

Indrid ... There is a prevailing thought in HK. That if your child does not do well in the HK schooling system they will do well or at least be ok in the UK schooling system. Obviously they have not thought it through as their DD was failing academically and socially in HK. I agree that they did not do due research as their DD moved to UK in a rush agaisnt the advice of other parents. Yet they are there and all we can do is help and find solutions.

I do appreciate your candid thoughts as it mirrors my own. I always maintain that you should always research the school is right for you child before letting them go.

I just hope the new school they have been admitted to is better. That losing a term deposit and a term in lieu is worth it.

Hopefully the pastoral care will be better and she can eventually find friends.

IndridCold Sat 04-Jun-16 11:36:06

I have to say I am often amazed at the number of HK parents who come onto Mumsnet seeking advice about schooling here, it is such an incredibly long way away.

Again, I apologise for being impatient with your friends, they have certainly learned the hard way. I hope that their DD settles well in her new school.

hertsandessex Sat 04-Jun-16 11:38:45

For what it's worth we didn't pay a full term. The place was filled a month into term so we only paid the month but I don't think most schools are that generous.

happygardening Sat 04-Jun-16 13:15:39

"I agree they didn't do their research"
In fairness many UK parents also don't do their research, they too are often blinded by the schools very efficient so marketing dept, its reputation, views of friends with DC's there, glossy prospectus, polished children singing the school praise in videos and swanky open days. Some do their research very well and look very carefully at everything and ask lots of questions and still make mistakes. There's not a school out there that suits every child, at every school they'll be unhappy parents and children who seem to have had a completely different experience to the majority. Choosing a school is always a bit of a leap of faith.

mummytime Sun 05-Jun-16 08:16:32

Just to add to what happy has said, some factors which affect how one student experiences school cannot be researched:
-the other children in their classes and their personalities
- the exact mix of teachers the encounter, and how the student and teachers personalities interact

QGMum Sun 05-Jun-16 10:42:51

Agree completely with what happy and mummytime have said. This is from personal experience. Two dds, same primary school and completely different experience based on year group and class teachers. It's so hard to know how a school is going to work out for a particular dc.

Grikes Sun 05-Jun-16 11:17:31

I agree with this line of thought from Mummy and Happy. It seems even with a change of head the ethos of the school can change.

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