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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 11:25 am 
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I have a DS in Y7 at a local grammar school (not S/S). I've been given his "predicted GCSE grades" based on the new 1-9 system. I understand the grading etc. but what I don't understand is are these predicted grades revised yearly or is this the only time I will receive them and then I'm told whether my DS is on target/above/below etc. from here on in?

Obviously a lot can happen between now and the time when my DS sits his GCSE's and understand that everything can change (for better or worse) so I was just wondering what the normal procedure is re revisiting/tweeking these grades over the next 2/4 years?

Many thanks


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PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 12:10 pm 
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My DS isn't at GS but he is provided with regular assessments of how his current performance might play out at GCSE level - so not a prediction as such but a 'working at this level now with continued similar application' level. This changes (up and down) depending on how hard he has been working on that topic each term. He finds it useful as a ready reckoner of his standard of work and I keep an eye on any unexpected or unusual changes.

It will depend on your child's school - but I'm sure it will reviewed as he goes through to GCSEs. Don't forget as well that some topics are brand new and you would expect a lower grade but with bigger jumps - we experienced this with Spanish, for example.


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PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 8:59 am 
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DC has also overheard friends talking about the end of year exams and the grades from them being used
to give predicted GCSEs. Was questioning me about 'what if someone is unwell that day and don't do well in the exam', and lots of what ifs...


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PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 10:32 am 
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amfnc wrote:
I have a DS in Y7 at a local grammar school (not S/S). I've been given his "predicted GCSE grades" based on the new 1-9 system. I understand the grading etc. but what I don't understand is are these predicted grades revised yearly or is this the only time I will receive them and then I'm told whether my DS is on target/above/below etc. from here on in?

Obviously a lot can happen between now and the time when my DS sits his GCSE's and understand that everything can change (for better or worse) so I was just wondering what the normal procedure is re revisiting/tweeking these grades over the next 2/4 years?

Many thanks

Gosh, that's early... DS is in year 10 in a selective indie and the first time anyone ever mentioned his predicted GCSE grades was a parents' evening earlier this year. It wasn't even a formal letter or anything like it, just his form tutor saying 'assuming he carries on like this, he should be on track to achieving XYZ at his GCSEs'. Do all grammar schools predict GSCE grades half-way through year 7? It seems a bit odd as at least in maths and English children may still be 'feeding off' their 11+ prep in the first few months to a certain extent.

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PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 11:04 am 
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I think these predicted grades come from how they perform in assessment tests like CAT or whatever the assessment is the school used. I think they look at historical data on how children with the particular score do in their GCSEs and then "predict" what a child should be capable of if they scored the same score.
I do wonder how it works sometimes as my DS left primary school with L6 maths and high L5 Literacy and then had high scores for CATs as well. So the expectation is he should get Grade 7/8/9 in pretty well any subject and the school is then underperforming if he does not get these grades. He also has a dyspraxia diagnosis and struggles with organisation and anything practical like DT or art but he does tend to get there it is just like he is on his own slower developmental trajectory. The fact that he is not so good at these subjects I suspect leads to his teachers being quite hard on him at times.... because they expect him to be getting the high marks (He was told by one teacher he did not deserve to be at a grammar school as he was too slow cutting something up in cookery- we did get an apology when I gently pointed out the that GS test did not include an assessment of chopping skills) and that puts him off doing them and so he is disinclined to try because he cannot get the high marks expected and focuses on the subjects where he gets the high marks- so it becomes a vicious circle.
Hmm I think I have just argued for a less judgemental,less competitive, kinder education system that actually values all kids....


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PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 2:37 pm 
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PurpleDuck wrote:
amfnc wrote:
I have a DS in Y7 at a local grammar school (not S/S). I've been given his "predicted GCSE grades" based on the new 1-9 system. I understand the grading etc. but what I don't understand is are these predicted grades revised yearly or is this the only time I will receive them and then I'm told whether my DS is on target/above/below etc. from here on in?

Obviously a lot can happen between now and the time when my DS sits his GCSE's and understand that everything can change (for better or worse) so I was just wondering what the normal procedure is re revisiting/tweeking these grades over the next 2/4 years?

Many thanks

Gosh, that's early... DS is in year 10 in a selective indie and the first time anyone ever mentioned his predicted GCSE grades was a parents' evening earlier this year. It wasn't even a formal letter or anything like it, just his form tutor saying 'assuming he carries on like this, he should be on track to achieving XYZ at his GCSEs'. Do all grammar schools predict GSCE grades half-way through year 7? It seems a bit odd as at least in maths and English children may still be 'feeding off' their 11+ prep in the first few months to a certain extent.


I couldn't agree more, the fact that we've received these so early into my DS's secondary school career is what prompted my initial post/question. The grades are pretty good, obviously some better than others, but I know that he is has so much room for improvement from where he is now - particularly in the sciences and maths, tbh he's only 2 terms in and he's still finding his feet with all of it, which is why I was wondering if these grades are reviewed/reassessed each year?

Perhaps I shouldn't be reading too much into them and just let him carry on doing what he's doing and just giving him support when needed ....


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PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 5:09 pm 
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Hi,
DD in year 10 at a GS. They were given predicted GCSE grades after they had chosen their options, and were told they were based purely on SAT results from year 6 and CAT scores from year 7.
They could therefore have been given them in year 7 but I think the school held off so as not to influence GCSE choices.
I personally take them with a pinch of salt. They seem to be minimum predicted grades based on raw academic potential - but as we all know what really counts is how much work you put in!!!


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PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 5:16 pm 
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I think some schools are using the new grades as their assessment system now levels have gone - a pity imho.

In the past, levels were used for KS3 and then GCSE grades in KS4. Now we are in a strange place where the new grades are even understood properly yet! I can't see any point in giving GCSE predictions in Year 7 - they are meaningless.


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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2016 10:10 am 
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Thank you everybody, your comments (as always) have been very helpful!


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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2016 10:21 am 
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amfnc wrote:
I couldn't agree more, the fact that we've received these so early into my DS's secondary school career is what prompted my initial post/question. The grades are pretty good, obviously some better than others, but I know that he is has so much room for improvement from where he is now - particularly in the sciences and maths, tbh he's only 2 terms in and he's still finding his feet with all of it, which is why I was wondering if these grades are reviewed/reassessed each year?

Perhaps I shouldn't be reading too much into them and just let him carry on doing what he's doing and just giving him support when needed ....

You are absolutely right, I think. Looking back at the last 4 years, DS's performance went up and down depending on many things, including whether he liked a particular teacher! There are a lot of things they learn in a secondary school that they never heard of in their primary and some of those subjects may suit them while others don't. I wouldn't worry about those grade predictions - put the letters in your file somewhere and just keep an eye on how your DS is generally getting on and whether he keeps enjoying school. No point in him worrying about his GCSE grades in year 7. :)

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