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 Post subject: Death in family
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 9:33 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 09, 2009 11:09 am
Posts: 26
Our apeal involves the death of my wifes father just before the exam.

We have decided that I will attend the appeal alone, as it is still difficult for my wife to talk about events. At the time we were in discussions with the school about delaying taking the exam for two weeks as there was a fall back date.

One of the schools appeal arguements is that my dd should have sat the exam at this later date. In hindsight this is probably correct. I guess one of the main people taking the decision on which sitting was me. I have subsequently learnt of a couple of things that now make be believe that my daughter was even more upset than I though relating to the death. This is all pretty emotional stuff and I am concerned that I may break down during the appeal - does anyone have any advice?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 10:34 am 
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Joined: Wed May 09, 2007 2:09 pm
Posts: 875
Location: Solihull, West Midlands
You will I think have to explain to the panel that in a time of shock following the bereavement one instinct is to keep things "as normal" for the children, not having to rearrange the things outside the home that can for them provide an escape from the grief and shock at home. Two weeks would probably not have made any difference - it is a very short time to come to terms with the loss of a grandfather and also with the effect the death would have had on her mum. Plus doing the test separately might have meant unfamiliar surroundings, being separated from friends and proved more upsetting. When my Dad went into hospital (and sadly died a couple of weeks later) my eldest son was in the middle of A levels: my youngest was in year 6 with violin exams, end of term trips, there were school concerts, work conferences etc etc- but I felt a definite need to "get on with things", not fall apart (in public anyway) and keep the family activities going - you can't simply cancel everything. Maybe someone on the panel will have had experience of a bereavement and will have some understanding of this - in any case all you can do is explain that you did what you thought was best at the time in an emotional crisis, and then (I'm sure others will be along to suggest this) concentrate on the evidence that proves your daughter is bright enough to have passed under "normal" circumstances

All the best

Solimum


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 11:11 am 
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Joined: Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:25 pm
Posts: 2556
what a very sensible reply from solimum and how sorry I am to hear your news, how distressing. Nothing to add apart from death changes the rules and to have to contemplate being castigated for not electing that your child take the exam at a different time can hardly help. The fact that your wife is not there will speak volumes. My very best of luck to you.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 1:12 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 09, 2006 6:09 pm
Posts: 379
Location: groombridge, e.sussex
In addition to the posts above, perhaps it would be a good idea for you to have somebody with you such as a close family friend. The support they will provide without even speaking could help hugely. Even if they are outside you knowing they are there might make you feel stronger.
Do remember that you can read your statement from a script; include as much as you feel is reasonable and they may not feel the need to ask too many questions. No doubt you will have read through the statement so many times it might not be as emotional on the day. In my experience panels are very nice people and will encourage you rather than discourage.
Just remember you are doing your best for your DD so good luck!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 1:35 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 2:28 pm
Posts: 2354
From experience, the situations that you are expecting to be difficult to cope with are often not as bad as you think they are going to be. Its unexpected things that can cause the most upset.
Would endorse the suggestion of reading a statement so you are not worrying about forgetting anything. Also if you rehearse it & read it over & over it does help you to 'de-sensitise'.
Very best wishes.


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 Post subject: Many thanks
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 4:10 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 09, 2009 11:09 am
Posts: 26
Thanks for all your comments and understanding, especially solimum, she is right in what she says that at the time my instinct was to try and keep things as normal as possible.

I agree that it is good for me to write down the points in advance even if they are just bullet points, there is less chance of me getting upset if I have run through it a lot of times, but at the moment I guess I am just putting off writing it down, or even thinking about it too much - which I know is the wrong thing to do but ....


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 6:39 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 27, 2009 2:01 pm
Posts: 43
Hi Parent1965. I'm so sorry to read about your situation. Please don't put off writing out your appeal in full, daunting tho' it is, as once you have your thoughts down on paper you can start to edit, re-order and rewrite it until it fully reflects your situation and what you need to get across to the panel. If you prefer to work from bullet points at the actual appeal then I would recommend also having a copy of your appeal written out in full in case your mind goes blank or, if you do find yourself getting upset and struggling, then your friend can take over and read from this - they would be unlikely to be able to take over with only bullet points to read from.
KB is right when s/he says that rehearsing and re-reading your appeal over and over does 'desensitise' you to a certain degree, we certainly found this to be the case. Wishing you all the best.


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