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My child not allowed to stay for A Levels

(47 Posts)
adadwithquestions Wed 01-Feb-17 15:25:36

To sit A Levels at her private school, my daughter needed to achieve 57 points (points awarded for GCSE grades). She achieved a couple of A grades and several B's but only achieved 55 points overall. Despite having been a model student since junior school, she was unceremoniously dismissed from the school. No discussion was permitted and no recourse offered. What kind of lesson is that teaching a child!? Why am I still angry?

LittleBoat Wed 01-Feb-17 15:28:35

I have heard of this at the schools near us. Fortunately we have a couple of excellent FE Colleges where everyone seems welcome. Is that an option for your daughter?

Isadora2007 Wed 01-Feb-17 15:30:02

Because private schools are not about the individual as much as their glossy brochures suggest they are? Twats. Your daughter will be better off elsewhere and I bet she will do fab. Save your money for uni!

Seeline Wed 01-Feb-17 15:34:17

Presumably these are the GSCEs she sat last August?
Presumably she is also now doing her A levels somewhere else, and has been since September?
Presumably the school made it clear quite early on what was required to enter the 6th form, and also what grades were required in order to continue with certain subjects at A level?
If she didn't meet those requirements, then there is no reason why the school should let her remain - especially if there was a shortfall in the subject grades required.
It is surely teaching the child that there are rules and requirements in life that will need to be met, and if you don't meet them then you have to have a plan B.
Why are you still angry - don't know. Let it go.

WannaBe Wed 01-Feb-17 15:38:28

The criteria are made clear at gcse time. She knew the score and didn't meet the criteria.

TeenAndTween Wed 01-Feb-17 15:46:48

You are probably angry as part of you feels mislead. You probably picked the school partly based on A level results / leavers destinations, without realising that they select out all but the highest achievers before 6th form.
You probably feel that they didn't care about what was best for your daughter, only what looked best for them.

Hopefully she is now happily doing A levels elsewhere (state option maybe?) and you will learn to let go of the anger and realise she will do better in a supportive environment than one where she feels she is the least able. (You may also be able to think of all the money you are saving too).

tiggytape Wed 01-Feb-17 15:47:10

I suppose it's worse because she was so close to the qualifying mark. If the qualifying score was 67 for example, it would probably feel less of a blow. It's also understandable that you feel a bit cross that no discretion was given considering her high score and good record.

But the other way to look at it is that she may be better off out of a school that is so arbitrary and so wholly focused on grades to the exclusion of all else.

DD may have been right at the lower end in some of her classes (only compared to others at the school - her GCSE results in themselves are very good). That's not always a happy place to be.

And she'd have had the pressure of knowing that she only just made it - the pressure of the teachers (or even other pupils) knowing that a special exception had been made to let her continue. That's possibly quite stressful.

Hopefully - and I do think this will be the case - the school's decision will be one of those things that you'll look back on in retrospect and be very glad about.

NerrSnerr Wed 01-Feb-17 15:48:12

They have to draw the line somewhere. I get that is must have been annoying and stressful but private schools want the best grades for their reputation.

Reality16 Wed 01-Feb-17 15:50:50

I don't think this is any different to a child not getting into the college/uni of their choice. It's based on the grades (or points or whatever criteria the establishment sets) and your daughter didn't quite make them. Sorry to be blunt about it but that's what it boils down to. Why you are still angry months later though, that's something you should probably get some help with. It's not healthy.

corlan Wed 01-Feb-17 15:53:14

No consolation for you, but there are state schools that do this as well.
I agree it's horrible.It feels like a masive rejection after 5 years of being nurtured to then be told, we don't want you any more.
I hope your daughter finds a course she enjoys elsewhere.

WannaBe Wed 01-Feb-17 15:59:06

"I agree it's horrible.It feels like a masive rejection after 5 years of being nurtured to then be told, we don't want you any more." that's only the case though if the criteria weren't made clear until the GCSE results were published, which I very much doubt.

My DS is in a grammar school and it's very well publicised that they have to get certain grades and a certain number of points in order to achieve the required result to be able to stay on at 6th form. He's in y9 now and he knows that he's going to have to work at GCSE level if he wants to stay on to do a-levels there.

HardcoreLadyType Wed 01-Feb-17 16:00:11

All of the schools near us, whether private or state, have sixth form entry criteria.

It is a pity for your DD that she didn't meet the criteria at her chosen school. Is your real that she's not settling in at her new school as well as you had hoped?

ThroughThickAndThin01 Wed 01-Feb-17 16:01:02

I feel for you, especially as she was so close. My ds was very lucky as his gcse results were nowhere near entry to sixth form level, yet he was allowed back in. I hope she finds somewhere she is happy with.

HardcoreLadyType Wed 01-Feb-17 16:01:06

Real concern, that should read.

Foldedtshirt Wed 01-Feb-17 16:03:08

Nerr
They have to draw the line somewhere. I get that is must have been annoying and stressful but private schools want the best grades for their reputation.
I disagree- if a child has been at school for some time, they've taken the parents' money and they're not happy with the results the school should bear some of the responsibility. It's different if a child arrives yr10, or is on a scholarship, but I think it's pretty shabby to kick them out at 16.
I hope your dd is thriving in her new school OP.

catslife Wed 01-Feb-17 16:10:42

OP this sort of practice is done by many high achieving schools in both the private and state sector. Most sixth forms would welcome your dd onto their A level courses with these grades and rather than seeing this as a personal rejection please view it as a new opportunity and a fresh start for your daughter (and you). Lots of pupils move to a different sixth form provider after GCSEs for all sorts of reasons so it really isn't that unusual.
A and B grades at GCSE would also be perfectly OK for most degree courses as well so would suggest looking ahead to the future rather than dwelling on the past.
On the other hand if anyone (whether on MN or in RL) asks whether you would recommend that particular school, I am sure they would find your point of view very interesting....

AtiaoftheJulii Wed 01-Feb-17 19:55:50

My son is in y11 and his school are very clear on the sixth form entry requirements - they cannot bend the rules at all because these are publicly published requirements for internal and external candidates. That's a state school though, a private school might have more leeway.

Hope your daughter is enjoying whatever she's doing now.

senua Wed 01-Feb-17 20:14:57

She achieved a couple of A grades and several B's

A lot of places will only let you take A Level if you have an A Grade at GCSE so the school is not being overly demanding.
Look on the bright side: she has had a set-back now, while she is still at home. You can help her bounce back, talk about resilience, plan a strategy. It's much better that this happens now than at A Level results time or when she is away at college.
It may not feel like it but the school has done her a favour by giving her a wake-up call.
We all feel angry when our DC have been thwarted but time will heal the hurt. Turn this into a positive. The school wasn't right for her at GCSE so why would you want to carry on there for A Level anyway?

lljkk Wed 01-Feb-17 20:17:28

er, maybe you chose the school for its high academic results & not for its fab reputation for pastoral care and treating everyone as a valued individual? So maybe who you're cross with is really yourself.

Odds are your DD has moved on, left that stress behind, & you should follow her example.

Sparklingbrook Wed 01-Feb-17 20:20:19

What has she been doing since September 2016? confused

MixedGrill Thu 09-Feb-17 07:38:45

The school doesn't 'have to draw the line' anywhere other than believing the student is academically capable of the A levels chosen. They choose to draw a line, and rule out loyal, happy customers in favour of marketing straight As at A level.

It came as a massive shock to us that sixth form in many schools (and we are in state education) is extremely selective. The 3 local sixth forms we have looked at require As at GCSE to study any of the sciences and maths.

Private schools should be clearer about this from the outset. I assume the school was selective to some degree on entry? Perhaps a note in the Yr 7 prospectus warning parents that if they do not educate your child to a certain pass level they will trade her in for a new model.

midcenturymodern Thu 09-Feb-17 07:50:11

Dcs (state) school does this but the entry criteria aren't as high. They have over 200 pupils in each year group but only 150 6th form spaces and take dcs from other local secondaries which don't have 6th forms. I suppose it's like university. If you don't make the offer you don't get the place but some places let you in through clearing with lower grades if they have the space.
FWIW we were told that entry to 6th form wasn't automatic before ds even started in Y7.

T1mum3 Thu 09-Feb-17 08:00:34

"Perhaps a note in the Yr 7 prospectus warning parents that if they do not educate your child to a certain pass level they will trade her in for a new model."

This. I totally understand your upset OP. They presumably selected your DD at year 7, she worked hard and didn't quite achieve what was required. If she's worked hard, there has either been a fault in their original selection procedure, or in the education provided. Or, they realised they can fill their places at sixth form with the most academic children to drive up results.

It's not the same as applying for a job or university. This is a school which you and your family committed to and paid for and she presumably had very established social groups. To push her out for the sake of two points without allowing her to do retakes is cruel in my view.

Most private schools always used to have a requirement for sixth form that was something like passing five GCSEs at C grade or above, but they would generally allow retakes in the Autumn term if that's what the family wanted.

Unfortunately all schools seem to be going this way.

GinIsIn Thu 09-Feb-17 08:06:58

GCSE results were out ages ago - why on earth are you getting worked up about this now? confused

The school were clear about their academic standard and your daughter has failed to reach it - it's unfortunate for you but not the school's fault. It is also in your DD's interests to not continue - if it's an academic school and she is below the required standard she would struggle to keep up with the rigours of A Level.

girlelephant Thu 09-Feb-17 08:08:09

OP why are you writing about this now? What is she doing now?

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