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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2016 8:33 am 
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My Yr13 did 4 AS levels then dropped to 3 A2 in Yr13. It is an unusual school but more details would identify it.

The Yr13s who have dropped a subject still have to attend the class they have dropped to sign a register. They then either sit at the back of that class or do work elsewhere and at the end of the lesson return for the teacher to sign a form stating they have supervised the work done. The dropped lessons are still on the indivdual's online timetable.

Apparently this is because of funding and I have been told by the school that all schools do it. My DC feels awkward that she has had to sign things which aren't accurate and I feel this sedns out a very poor message.

My question is: is this a widespread practice- do all Sixth forms do it for their Yr 13 students?

I appreciate this may be sensitive so please PM me if you don't want to share on the forum.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2016 9:59 am 
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Not at the school my DCs attend. I've never heard of anyone else doing this either. Part of the joy of dropping a subject is that it frees up some time.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2016 10:03 am 
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I've never heard of a school do this - the point of dropping an AS is to free up time for A2 study. It has nothing to do with funding ...


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2016 10:17 am 
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Mmm, my gut feeling was that it sounds odd!

I don't want to identify the school, but I believe provides a lower number of sixth form teaching hours per subject than other sixth forms for various reasons. I think that is why dropping a subject in Yr13 could cause problems with funding if there aren't enough hours per student. I was assured this was common practice though, which sounds like it may not be the case.

They have a form which the DC has to complete with work they have done in the "dropped" lesson and the "dropped" subject teacher then has to sign a statement at the bottom saying they supervised this work. In DC's case the dropped subject is totally different to her 3 continuing A2s (i.e. humanities vs STEM), and no supervision actually takes place, except the signing of the form. This is the case for all students who have dropped a subject at this school.

Has anyone at all come across this? (Or please post if you know your school/ DC don't have to do this).
I am concerned.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2016 10:38 am 
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I've heard of it happening in a couple of schools. I gather it's just a way of making sure that the kids are using the extra spare time to study for their remaining A2s rather than hanging out in the common room, playing on their phones.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2016 11:02 am 
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Some schools expect the student to be in the Sixth Form study area and there is a member of staff there. They sign in to 'prove' they were there - home study is allowed two afternoons a week if they can get home.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 29, 2016 9:12 am 
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It sounds like the wording of the form may be the issue ie. officially the member of staff is responsible for the pupil during that time and for ensuring academic work is undertaken so in that sense is supervising them v having any input to the specific work being undertaken.

It sounds like it's just a particular way of ensuring the pupils who have dropped a subject are using the extra time on their other subjects.

Some schools take a more relaxed approach than others but I'm not sure there is anything really wrong with this one.

My understanding was that A level funding had changed from being per subject studied to per pupil ( because it hit our local GS, where 4 subjects at A2 was the minimum ) so I'm not sure this would make a difference to how funding was calculated?


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 29, 2016 10:34 am 
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Gegenschein wrote:
Mmm, my gut feeling was that it sounds odd!

I don't want to identify the school, but I believe provides a lower number of sixth form teaching hours per subject than other sixth forms for various reasons. I think that is why dropping a subject in Yr13 could cause problems with funding if there aren't enough hours per student. I was assured this was common practice though, which sounds like it may not be the case.

They have a form which the DC has to complete with work they have done in the "dropped" lesson and the "dropped" subject teacher then has to sign a statement at the bottom saying they supervised this work. In DC's case the dropped subject is totally different to her 3 continuing A2s (i.e. humanities vs STEM), and no supervision actually takes place, except the signing of the form. This is the case for all students who have dropped a subject at this school.

Has anyone at all come across this? (Or please post if you know your school/ DC don't have to do this).
I am concerned.


Haven't come across it and don't know why they are doing it - and yes, if your child is signing something that is not true that's not right and you should discourage it or, if they're under 18, point out to school that you are aware that your child has signed some things that are not true and are therefore not valid for whatever purpose the forms are use for.

However, I'm not clear whether your child has signed something that is not true or whether it is the teacher that is doing so (i.e. sayiing they "supervised" it when they didn't). If what your child is signing is true (e.g. I sat in the library and I read my geography textbook) then I wouldn't worry about this system or why they run it --- it just is providing a good structure to ensure your child works during free periods rather than larking around.

Perhaps it does have something to do with funding too - see the bits about funding levels and timetabled hours per student here:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/16-to-19-fu ... programmes


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 29, 2016 11:32 am 
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Location: Essex
DD's school (she is in year 10 but DS1 did his A levels there last year) has them sign in twice a day, but they don't have to sit in other students' lessons in their free or study periods. Not sure what DS2's school does; he is only in year 8 and his brother moved for sixth form. I think it is something similar to DD's school, though.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 29, 2016 11:42 am 
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Funding is to do with teaching hours - my conclusion is the school is not giving enough contact hours through three A levels!

So it is doubly short-changing students ...


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