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My son doesn't want to do core science

(31 Posts)
ctatnell Fri 27-Sep-19 10:51:19

Hi I wondered if anyone could help or had any information. My son has just started year 10 GCSES and absolutely hates science. We are told he cannot drop it as it is a core subject but he is refusing to go to school when he has it which is 4 out of the 5 day week ! Has anyone been in this situation or is there anyway around this core subject. Maths and English are core subjects and you have to redo them at college if u fail at school. So if the government is saying science is so important how comes this isn't the case for the subject too. Surely going to school for all the other subjects is better than him not turning up at all. Any help much appreciated

OP’s posts: |
Silentlysinking101 Fri 27-Sep-19 10:54:12

Unfortunately it is a core subject and he cannot not do it.

Has he given any information about why he hates it? Is there an issue with the teacher or peer group issues?

Sometimes in life we have to do things we don't like, he needs to start turning up to his lessons and I am afraid I don't think you should be support g his decision not to or facilitating it.

TeenPlusTwenties Fri 27-Sep-19 11:59:32

Science is important for understanding the modern world.
The biology bit especially is needed for understanding his own body, how vaccinations work, how washing powders work etc.

SN aside he needs to be persuaded/bribed to attend.

tbh even if he is going to skive off science by going to the referral unit / inclusion room etc he needs to be in for all the other lessons.

ps DD is y10 and has science every day.

berlinbabylon Fri 27-Sep-19 12:06:11

Yes he does have to do it. I don't agree it should be compulsory for double or triple - a single science should be enough but you do need it for a balanced curriculum.

Why does he hate it so much and all of it? I assume it's not all being taught by the same teacher?

LolaSmiles Fri 27-Sep-19 12:07:19

It's a core subject and he is 3-4 weeks into GCSE.
Have you told him you asked if he can drop it and school have said no, because that's probably going to make the next steps more difficult

I think you need to unpick the issue without entertaining the idea of pushing the school to try and drop a core subject. It there are specific issues then have a chat with school, bit crucially don't go in with the view that his view is gospel.

In my experience students with parents who turn up wanting everything bending around what their child wants/doesn't want to do/study end up having a long battle full of manipulation. It doesn't help the student settle in school because once they have found how to get their way on one thing, another issue comes up (different subject / different teacher / doesn't want to do PE / doesn't want intervention / can't do homework etc).

SEND needs aside he needs to get on with it.

AmIThough Fri 27-Sep-19 12:10:16

@berlinbabylon double science is all 3 rolled into one GCSE - you can't get 1
GCSE in science unless you sit all 3 as separate GCSEs.

OP unfortunately there's no way around this. Although 4 days a week seems extreme for core science!
It's not the schools decision - he'll just have to get on with it.

Let him know if his attendance doesn't pick up he won't get into any college anyway.

Drabarni Fri 27-Sep-19 12:10:29

They have to do it even if you are 99% sure they'll fail it, it's ridiculous.
I can understand maths and English as you need these for a job and to progress.

BertrandRussell Fri 27-Sep-19 12:13:08

Is he in too high or too low a set? Does he struggle with the maths element? Has he got behind and is worried about catching up? Does he hate wearing protective clothing? Does he not like the teachers? Just thinking about the possible non subject reasons he might hate it.

RedskyLastNight Fri 27-Sep-19 12:34:34

My DD is taking combined science (which I presume is what OP's DS is taking?) and she has 9 hours of science (3 for each one) a fortnight. So the volume of lessons seems correct.

I'm a bit confused as to why this is suddenly an issue. Presumably DS had science lessons in Y7-Y9? Why is it now suddenly a problem?

Starlight456 Fri 27-Sep-19 17:34:45

What are you doing about school refusal

It seems you need to resolve the issue with what’s wrong with science and how to make it work.

NotGreenNotKeen Fri 27-Sep-19 17:36:10

Tough. He's got to grow up and do it. We can't do everything we like when we like.

Pinkyyy Fri 27-Sep-19 17:37:58

You should be spending your energy finding out why he hates it, not thinking of ways for him to get out of it.

It could well be that he doesn't understand it. Have you talked about getting him a tutor?

Thenotes Fri 27-Sep-19 17:38:00

I think the fact that sometimes we just have to get on with doing things we'd prefer not to is an important lesson in life and you need to support the school and get him attending or find him a school that doesn't require him to do science.

SansaSnark Fri 27-Sep-19 18:16:37

Given the number of science lessons in a week, the school is unlikely to be able to offer your son any other subjects during that time. You then hit the issue of what he does during that class time- someone would have to supervise him, and the school will not have appropriate facilities for this. He's also unlikely to fill his progress 8 "buckets" without science.

It is very, very unlikely the school will allow him to drop science at this stage. Therefore, you need to think about other solutions. Can you have an honest chat about what the issue with science is? As others have said, he must have had some form of science lessons from Y7 onwards. If you can find out the issue, perhaps there is a solution that isn't just "drop science".

Drabarni Fri 27-Sep-19 18:36:11

It's such a shame they stopped the single award, at least it was only worth one GCSE and a lot less work.
I don't understand why they did this, not everyone wants to take it at A level, the argument for it's discontinue.

FiveHoursSleep Fri 27-Sep-19 19:09:27

Does your son have SNs? My son is only Y7 but he has ASD/ ADHD and very squeamish. I can see him doing something like this thinking all science is biology!
DD3 has ASD and is Y9. She hated chemistry after a teacher gave her class an OTT safety talk. She's convinced she's going to dissolve her arm or something will blow up because she makes a mistake.
I think GCSE science might be tough for her too although she's academically able.

CalamityJune Fri 27-Sep-19 19:27:58

There are are many, many things in life that we have to do even though we don't want to.

I don't think you siding with your son against the school on this one is going to do him any favours in the long run. Why does he (or you for that matter) think that the National Curriculum doesn't apply to him? Without an EHCP, it is statutory.

WindsweptEgret Fri 27-Sep-19 19:45:39

Being able to think scientifically is hugely beneficial in many areas of adult life, I think it is just as essential as maths or English. I also believe that teenagers should not be cut off from accessing a broad curriculum from the age of 14. Of course, there would also be timetabling issues if every student could just pick any subjects they wanted, there needs to be some restriction for logistical reasons.

ASauvignonADay Fri 27-Sep-19 20:24:21

I think in most schools it'd be very difficult for him to not do core science from a practical sense due to timetabling, aside from any other reasons.

CripsSandwiches Sat 28-Sep-19 09:57:45

I think you need to get to the bottom of why this is such a big deal for him. Most students have done subjects they don't like and wish they didn't have to take but it doesn't lead to them refusing school entirely. Do you think he's very anxious about it? Is there an issue with the teacher or other students on that particular class? Or is he just throwing a tantrum?

Savingforarainyday Sat 28-Sep-19 10:00:36

He's gotta do it.
Talk to head of year and see if he can change classes.
He really has to though

SweetAsSpice Sat 28-Sep-19 10:03:42

Get to the bottom of why he hates it. Speak to the school about his school refusal/reluctance - the sooner you get them on board with this the better.

Teachable moment too, sometimes in life we have to do things we don’t ‘like’ but are necessary. He needs to understand basic science, even if he won’t have a career in it. And having a qualification in it will open doors in the future - show him how a broad and rounded education gives you choices for the future. It’s hard for teenagers to consider the bigger picture, but I’ve taught too many students who realise the importance too late - and then have to go through the costly, time consuming route of gaining qualifications after compulsory education is finished.

Perunatop Sat 28-Sep-19 10:10:22

If he doesn't like his science teacher try to find out why and suggest strategies for him to deal with it.

ctatnell Sat 28-Sep-19 11:18:09

Thank you all so much for your comments. He was excluded from his previous school for constant bad behaviour and then had to go to a referral unit. I managed to get him back into a nice school about 6 weeks before the summer holidays... This was on a part time basis and then about 3 weeks full time which even then some days were missed. Obviously as a parent I want him to get some education and be in school. Especially the math and English as he does talk about going to college to learn a trade.

OP’s posts: |
BertrandRussell Sat 28-Sep-19 11:58:33

Presumably you’re in very close contact with the school? What do they think the best approach is?

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