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i cant talk to DD...she has decided not to do A level...but!!

(49 Posts)
ThatVikRinA22 Fri 22-Mar-13 23:08:24

ok - so DD struggles with exams and has dyslexia - but she really does put the effort in and does ok.

she is expecting Bs and Cs from her GCSEs. She was going to go to college to do A levels, but in last 2 days has changed her mind and says she is going to do a BTEC in health and social care - even though she has no idea what she wants to do when she leaves college.

ive tried to talk to her but she just gets horrible, sarky, annoyed, shouts, and i now give up. there is no speaking with her at all. ive no objection to her doing absolutely anything she wants - but she doesnt seem to know where anything leads.
she hasnt researched at all possible career options from doing a btec in healh and social....

she has no idea what she wants to do.

she was originally going to take A levels in English, psychology, business and media. I felt this would have kept her options more open but she has decided the stress is too much (which is fine....but i felt that her initial choice would have kept her options more open)

what can she go into with health and social care? she has no desire to go into nursing.
but she wont even discuss it with me. shuts down the conversation as soon as it starts and storms off - DH was going on about it earlier, but when she got home and i asked he clammed up and didnt say a bloody i was the bad guy yet again for daring to ask what she intended to do with this BTEC....he just sat in silence and really really annoyed me. He was really not happy with her choice unless she knew what she wanted from it - but he didnt back me up at all when i asked her. So ive told him he can deal with it and im not getting invloved any further - she resents me as it is. i ask too many questions.

what does health and social care lead to career wise?

Chopchopbusybusy Fri 22-Mar-13 23:16:23

I have no idea what health and social care can lead to, but having a DD of the same age who is completely frustrating me I felt obliged to reply!
Would that take up her whole timetable? I'm not sure but suspect it's two choices. Leaving two or three more.

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 22-Mar-13 23:29:10

she seems to think she will just do one BTEC and nothing more....but she wont even discuss it with me.

im trying not to push it because she is so stubborn and may talk to me if i leave it alone - or she may talk to DH. im the enemy you see sad im the nag. im the one who asks all the questions while DH keeps silently in the back ground so he is the good guy.....

im a bit pissed off with him. he raised concerns. i voiced them. he didnt back me up.

ive decided to leave it.

i always do the wrong thing (i ordered her a strapless bra from john lewis for her prom dress but typically she hates it and wont try it - i suspect because i had a hand in it.

im getting to the point of not asking anything anymore. she is being the biggest nightmare she has ever been in her entire 15 years....

scarlettsmummy2 Fri 22-Mar-13 23:37:23

I work in youth employability and actually think this is a great stepping stone into lots of things! She could do that and then go on to do a social work degree, which although depressing in some ways, can also lead to lots of interesting things- not just child protection. For example, lots of programme managers for charities or community development schemes have social work back grounds. It could also lead to care home management if she wanted to stay in the care field.

mowzer Sat 23-Mar-13 00:01:08

Are her choices related to what her friends are choosing?
Can you plan a night out/away just the two of you to try to reconnect? Maybe agree not to discuss her options for a couple of weeks to give her some space.

So hard trying to make important choices at that age, I think making a compromise between enjoyable right now and practical for the future is the way to go. If she finds studying difficult, she may enjoy the BTEC more than A levels.

Chopchopbusybusy Sat 23-Mar-13 00:14:03

Is there a 6th form open evening you can gont

Chopchopbusybusy Sat 23-Mar-13 00:15:32

Sorry!! Go to with her? I really can't see that 1 BTEC can fill her timetable.

cory Sat 23-Mar-13 09:35:57

Is it one single BTech or is it a BTech certificate (which I believe is equivalent to several BTechs)? I seem to remember seeing something like this in dd's catalogue.

Would it be possible for you to visit the college together and talk about what kind of thing students go into after this course, what good combinations are etc etc.

LIZS Sat 23-Mar-13 09:39:51

Check what level they offer as it may only add to GCSE equivalent and be taught at a very basic level. If she can achieve B and C at 5+ GCSE then I'd suggest she looks into something slightly more advanced, as level 2 is more of the same, or perhaps an A level or two to build around it.

RandomMess Sat 23-Mar-13 09:43:22

I'm assuming it's a full time BTECH course, the equivalent to the old OND.

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Sat 23-Mar-13 09:48:29

Do you think she feels scared about A levels?

At the end of the day though, if she does this Btec - it's not her only shot at education/training. She can take other courses.

I would suggest that you just support her in this. She can do other things afterwards, if that's what she wants.

People think that you have to make your choices Right Now, like it's the only chance you'll get. But that's not true.

I left school without any qualifications (didn't take them). I went to college, got some there. Stayed on, did some A level courses and applied to uni, switched to a performing arts course, and then a health sciences, then quit altogether, went to do a f/t business admin course.

I faffed about chopping and changing for about 3 years but I got there in the end.

KelleStar Sat 23-Mar-13 09:55:50

Clarify if it's a BTEC National (level 3, same as a-level) or First (level 2, same as GCSE).

A BTEC National Award is equiv to 1 a-level.
A BTEC National Certificate is equiv to 2 a-levels
A BTEC National Diploma is equiv to 3 a-levels

BTEC's are a good qualification and can still consider going on to do a degree from. The assessments vary by module, you should be able to find specific course data on the edexcel website, it will list all the compulsory modules, and what optional modules she can choose.

The style of assessment may be more suited to her, if she struggles with the pressure of exams.

Health and Social Care isn't just about nursing, I've seen students go onto sociology degrees, teaching and healthcare management.

I am on my phone, otherwise would give you the links.

lljkk Sat 23-Mar-13 09:57:02

I think you have to let go a bit, OP, sorry, I know that's easy for Me to say.

I know with Dd the best I can do is drag her along somewhere insisting that final decision is hers, but how can she know she made the decision properly without being open-minded about all the possibilities, which means exploring them properly.

sashh Sat 23-Mar-13 10:05:49

I really can't see that 1 BTEC can fill her timetable.

It does, it is equivalent to 3 A Levels. and takes as much time.

Most of the students I've taught over the years have gone into nursing but also

operating department practitioner
care home manager

It is a very good course, lots of practical things like hand washing and first aid but lots of academic work as well.

All students have to take one or two research modules, so they learn Harvard referencing before uni.

There is also a work placement, so one day a week at a care home or similar.

Some students take an A Level along side, but not many.


BTech is an Indian qualification.

BTECs come in levels 1, 2, 3, HNC/HND. I'm assuming the OP's daughter is looking at Level 3 as she will already have GCSEs.

All levels come as an award, a certificate and a diploma. Which you obtain depends on which units you take and how many.

A Level 3 Diploma is 18 units and takes two years full time study.

mrsjay Sat 23-Mar-13 10:07:01

she could go on and do social work with her BTEC she could become a carer support worker HC assistant all sorts off things , I did Health and social care a million years ago , I work with children and parents now as a support worker , let her decide for herself higher education isn't for everybody,

campergirls Sat 23-Mar-13 10:31:09

You have my sympathies, my dd is exactly like this when anyone tries to give her advice... I can't comment on the health and social care BTEC, it's outside my experience. But as a university lecturer whose job involves working closely with VI forms, I'm afraid I think that if she's on course for Bs and Cs at GCSE, she would be likely to find the suite of A levels you mention extremely challenging. So looking at alternative courses might be very sensible.

insancerre Sat 23-Mar-13 10:48:39

I think you should let her choose her own path.
BTECs are a very good alternatives to A levels and are a much better introduction to degrees as they are modular and not so exam based and usually involve work placements which is great for learning practical workbased skills.

nickstmoritz Sat 23-Mar-13 11:55:18

Doing a level 3 BTEC is an acceptable alternative to A levels and in your situation I would congratulate your dd in investigating her options post GCSE. Those A levels might be horrendously pressured for your DD and there might be a possibility of her either struggling or dropping out especially if she does not have a goal at the end of them or a real passion for the subjects.

My DD with dyslexia (younger than yours) has chosen practical subjects as options to take the pressure off written core subjects and DD1 doing GCSEs is predicted to get 10 or 11 with a few predicted A/A* and is going to do a level 3 BTEC instead of A levels. I am fine with it but she knows she wants to do an art based degree so the BTEC will lead to that.

I would start by saying well done to DD and say you will support her decision BUT ask her why she has chosen that particular BTEC and is there any other BTEC that might suit her? Is she creative, enjoy working with children, teens, older people etc what I mean is go at it from a positive stance and visit the colleges in the area. Some BTEC courses have an option of taking one A level too which would give your DD equivalent of 4 A levels. Or take BTEC and get pt job so your DD has work experience and a qualification. These days a uni degree is no guarantee so a practical route might get your DD on the work ladder debt free and most universities will snap up a young person with experience and a BTEC.

If DD agrees to investigate the BTEC options with you and can justify her choice then be happy with it. There is time to change her mind so even if she does start the social care BTEC and decides it isn't right she can go back to A levels the following year and you have been supportive so she will have nothing to come back at you with. As it stands, if she does the A levels and struggles you will be blamed for it (ifswim).

nickstmoritz Sat 23-Mar-13 11:58:36

As Kellestar said above check it is a level 3 extended diploma which is the A level standard BTEC not level 2

ThatVikRinA22 Sat 23-Mar-13 12:11:19

thanks every one this is extremely helpful.

it is a level 3 - so seems like it could be a good alternative to A levels - the only thing i wanted to discuss with her was indeed why health and social care....but she just wont discuss it.

i will support her in anything and i agree that i think A level would be a struggle for her - she does ok in exams but gets so stressed its just not worth it.

anyway - will see if DH can talk to her.
thanks all.

nickstmoritz Sat 23-Mar-13 12:45:30

Have a look at the BTEC website which might help you get your head round that side of it. I would say nothing for now but if there are any open days coming up at colleges you could suggest visiting together.

specialsubject Sat 23-Mar-13 13:08:29

no-one really knows what they want to do at this stage.

however everyone can act like a human being, conduct a civil conversation and not sulk like a toddler. Sounds like that's what really needs addressing.

SanityClause Sat 23-Mar-13 13:19:43

Do you need to discuss her choice?

It's a useful and worthy thing to do, and can lead to lots of different and interesting careers. And as others have said, she could change her mind when she gets older and do some other qualification later in life.

Perhaps you just need to trust her on this?

Signet2012 Sat 23-Mar-13 14:07:01

I did a btec in health and social care and went on to do a sociology degree.

EvilTwins Sat 23-Mar-13 14:23:25

Have a look at the Edexcel website. You want to look at BTEC Nationals since 2010 in the qualifications section. H&S will be there. Very likely it's a BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma, which is the size of 3 A Levels. Oxbridge won't take students with that as entry qualifications but other universities will if that's what she wants to do. We do the Subsidiary Diploma (1 A Level) and Diploma (2 A Levels) at our school and students have gone on to nursing, paramedic courses, primary teaching courses, into nurseries, into old people's homes and other areas of the care industry with it.

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