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GCSEs

(12 Posts)
eyebrowsonfleek Thu 25-Aug-16 18:15:04

I'm a parent of a y10 who did a GCSE (Statistics) this year and the rest next year.

I did O levels so am in need of clarification on a point. My son is a bit shady so I'm not sure if he's making things up.

Controlled Assessments. Do kids know when they happen? When do they find out results? Are they told to revise a topic? Is it under exam conditions?

Basically ds got a B in his written exam and E for his controlled assessment. (C overall) He swears that everybody in top set did badly in the CA and that the teacher did not explain the task well before they did it and that's why it's so low.

I thought that CA were an easy way to bag some marks just in case of exam nerves. How can he prepare next year? It's a shame that the CA had a negative effect on his grades. His school's sixth form require A grades for the subjects that he want to do for A levels so he needs to learn how to nail CA.

He's also done some CA for other subjects like Computer Science. He says that he has no idea about the grades- is this likely or is he hiding bad grades?

yeOldeTrout Thu 25-Aug-16 22:24:04

The kids very much know when they are doing CAs. They are told heavily what to revise for, the conditions aren't quite "exam" afaik, but similar.

If he is lying, Why do you think he's lying to you? Why can't he tell you the truth? Does he really want for post-yr11 what you think he wants? are you pressuring him and he has no plan of his own?

eyebrowsonfleek Thu 25-Aug-16 22:55:14

I'm not pressuring him in any direction. He can do a vocational course, go onto Sixth Form whatever.
He will NOT talk about school. He honestly believes that his report offers more information that I need. angry I should have said secretive rather than lying.

He is top sets, not willing to put in effort and thinks that he's going to get into Sixth Form without a problem. He won't talk about back up plans or vocational courses.

He might get into Sixth Form without effort. What is pretty likely to happen is that he has to go elsewhere. I don't want to be panicking this time next year trying to find a random place when he can put in the effort or at least think about plan B.

Thank you for your help.

KittyVonCatsington Thu 25-Aug-16 23:14:33

I can help with the Computer Science CA (all CAs for every subject are different, set differently, marked differently etc)

He will be doing an approximate 20 hour CA and he won't technically know the mark of grade until August of 2017 BUT at the end of the 20 hours, he may be given a rough indication of raw mark at the discretion of the teacher. It can't be given during the 20 hours as that is considered feedback and he would then not be able to continue working on it.

Who marks it? His class teacher. It will be internally moderated by another teacher internally. Then it will be sent off so an Examiner can verify the marking.
The CA will be done under medium exam conditions - material can only be accessed and used during a CA hour and the teacher must not give any guidance to solving any solution or correcting any work that is directly relevant to the CA material. He will, however, have the mark scheme and will have been taught the programming skills to complete the task

Hope this helps! grin

clary Thu 25-Aug-16 23:32:02

If he is doing an MFL he will know about CAs and get time to prepare/learn a draft. he will do 4 so should have done at least 1.

Teacher will mark the speakings - personally I share the grades but not all do - and written CAs are marked externally but I usually share my estimate of the mark.

yeOldeTrout Fri 26-Aug-16 09:32:03

I haven't had the over-confident hide head in sand type, sorry I'm not much help with those. I have had to nag a lot about plan Bs, just keep at it until they come up with something.

gonzo155 Fri 26-Aug-16 10:04:06

Do kids know when they happen?
Yes, depending on the subject months or a year in advance. In some like science it may only be weeks.

When do they find out results?
When they get their results but almost all teachers will tell them what grade it will be assuming the grade boundaries stay the same.

Are they told to revise a topic?
They are told what it is on and in most cases are given lots of revision prompts.

Is it under exam conditions?
Depends on subject and CA. Some you can talk to others but can't use textbooks or computers. Others are in silence. Teachers can't help during the CA.

My advice would be to get an e-mail off to his teachers asking if he has done his CA and if they can give you an indication of if he is on target for the CA.

eyebrowsonfleek Fri 26-Aug-16 18:27:23

Thanks guys.
He is very shady and secretive about school. My parents didn't micromanage my schooling but I was motivated and did well. Ds seems to be doing the bare minimum and lacks any motivation at all. I know that I can't lead a horse to water and make him drink but I'm happy to do the leading.

I have a feeling that I'm supposed to let him screw up and bear the brunt of his anger when he doesn't make it to Sixth Form next year. It's so frustrating to know that I have to somehow work out a plan B with a child who doesn't know what he wants to do and really thinks that he'll make the grades without the effort.

gonzo155 Fri 26-Aug-16 20:27:19

Don't panic yet. I've seen kids get Es all year then turn it around just before the exam and end up with a B.

eyebrowsonfleek Fri 26-Aug-16 23:23:14

Gonzo Is that because of the school revision sessions?

Ds had an end of year geography test in July and got a U. He admits barely writing anything because it was hot, after lunch and during his lunch break he played basketball and was feeling too tired to write as a result. He seemed surprised that the school would contact me about it and looked at me like this hmm when I told him that his cba attitude stunk.

I have a tiger mum (who's disappointed that I ended up at LSE rather than Oxbridge hmm) so am well aware of not applying too much effort. Ds is coasting.

gonzo155 Sat 27-Aug-16 09:44:20

Some of it is down to interventions like revision sessions but usually it's just the kids attitude changes. Teens struggle with long term thinking so struggle to make an emotional connection with a cba attitude and the consequences of that. Generally the nearer the exams, especially when they have started really looking at Post-16 options they start realising that they don't want to fail and pull their socks up. In most subjects if they really put the effort in in the month or so before the exam they can still do well.

I understand not wanting to push. I personally suggest just reminding him that he should be trying his best and if he doesn't he may be disappointed whenever you get contacted about him coasting. I wouldn't threaten or try to take control or anything like that as that can often have the opposite effect and put kids off trying later on.

eyebrowsonfleek Sat 27-Aug-16 13:55:40

Thanks gonzo.

I guess I need to be supportive by stepping back and hoping for the best.

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