How can we support students through GCSE’s? Stuart Ketley

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Transcript How can we support students through GCSE’s? Stuart Ketley

The Ashcombe School
Aims of tonight
• How can we support, encourage and
enthuse young people to achieve their
full potential?
• How are GCSE’s examined in 2014-16?
• What does the school do to support
pupils through Year 10 and 11?
• What can parents do to help their
children through the GCSE’s?
The Ashcombe School
Part 1 - How can we support, encourage and
enthuse young people to
achieve their full potential?
The Context
Your child has to be in Education or Training until the
end of the academic year they turn 18 (July 2018)
The vision…
All pupils at the end of their GCSE studies make
ambitious, suitable and realistic post-16 choices
through an atmosphere of mutual support based on
excellent exam results, quality career advice and
outstanding pastoral care
• Happy
• Safe
• Achieve
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The problems….
• Education Maintenance Allowance
abolished; however, students still have to
stay in ‘education or training’ until the end of
the academic year in which they turn 18
• Tuition fees at university
• Youth unemployment consistently in the
• Cuts in youth service provision
• Demonisation of youth in the media
• Gaining a ‘C grade’ in English and Maths
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What next?...The Ashcombe Sixth
• Realistic chance of ‘E grades’
• 40 GCSE points and a good reference
• However, if a student is following a ‘short course’ points are
halved (e.g. half history)
• Important to consider that English (Language and Literature)
and Science (Science and Additional Science) have two
examinations when counting points
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A-Levels at another college
• Commonly 5 A*-C, usually including English
and Maths
• Excellent reference
• Attendance (and punctuality) print out
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NVQ’s at a local college
Level 1 – no formal qualifications
Level 2 – 4 D’s
Level 3 – 4 C’s
• Be aware some students may be completing a
Level 1 course on ‘day release’
• Excellent attendance
• Quality Reference
• All have ‘specialism's’, e.g. Merrist Wood (outside)
and NESCOT (employment-focussed skills,
including apprenticeships)
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• Local companies approach the school offering
• Seeing a rise in this (at 16 and 18) due to current
economic climate and success of schools annual
careers fair
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How can we support students
• The dilemma
• How do we encourage, challenge and
support yet avoid alienating, threatening,
stressing or ‘doing for’?
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13 years ago…….
Exploring the world
Wanting to please
Mood swings
‘Social Learning’
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How did we support our children
when they were in Year 1?
• Sit and read
• Ask “What new things did
you do today?”
• Children bombard us with
• Excitement
• Enthusiastic
• Why is this?
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The dilemma of a parent
• “The problem is he’s not stressed enough.”
• “I’ve told her this is your last chance.”
• “I don’t know what more I can do- nothing
seems to get through to him.”
• “She doesn’t seem to care about her
• “However much I tell her that she is doing
well, she still says she is rubbish.” (often a
forgotten problem with high-ability pupils
who have low self-esteem)
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How do you help to motivate
• Major concern• Should you interfere and tell pupils to work
yet run the risk of confrontation?
• How do you encourage children?
• One of the major questions we get asked by
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The complexity of being an
• Stress and mental health issues are bigger
issues than apathy
• Recent Study- 20% of children have a
mental health problem in any given year,
and about 10% at any one time.
• In an average secondary school with 1000
students- 100 mental health problems
including depression, self harm and eating
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The pressures of being an
• A time of great challenges
• Frightening
• Exciting
• Real fear of failure
• Frightened of not meeting expectations of family,
school and friends
• Pressures of alcohol, drugs, media, consumerism,
• Social media
• Contradiction between young people who grow old
earlier without a clear moral compass and identity
• More child than adult
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Role of education in mental health
• Evidence that constant emphasis on exams
and results can create a tired and stressed
out group of pupils
• Danger- burn out of some- successful can
be unfulfilled as constantly striving for next
challenge• Alienation of those that perceive themselves
to have failed
• Part of Ashcombe ethos- commitment to
sustainable learning
• Avoid doing 12 or 13 GCSE’s- used advice
of Cambridge
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What are Year 10’s like to teach?
• Most of our teenagers are a pleasure to
teach (even if they do not always show
these qualities at home!...)
• When asked they virtually all want to do well
• All need support to reach these ambitions
• All are going through an extremely volatile
and complex period of life dominated by a
fear of failure
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Fear of failure
• Adolescence- “Brain thrives on challenge,
closes down on threat. When we
experience anxiety, fear, self consciousness
or any strong emotion, our neurons get
flooded with electrical signals, so there’s not
enough capacity left to process what is
going on in the moment. We literally stop
hearing and seeing what’s around us.”- J
Ratey- Neuroscience
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How do we respond to criticism
• “People reacted negatively to criticism more
than half the time and reacted positively to
criticism just once out of thirteen times. In
other words, the most likely response to
criticism will be a negative one, the next
most likely is no impact, and the chance
that criticism will be helpful is about once
every three weeks, if you dished it out every
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• Brain flourishes if rate of success to failure
is 4:1
• Talking about success/ getting it right
increases the likelihood of reoccurrence
Three key featuresChildren need to feel safe
Children need to be challenged
Children need high expectations
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What is a solution focussed
Introduced to the school by Henry Kiernan
All pupils want to do well
All children have strengths
All children can achieve with the appropriate
support, nurture and understanding
• Working together we can achieve much
• Expectations of success by all is critical to
achieving it
• Look to the future rather than the past
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Principles of this approach
• Students, parents and teachers have
capacities to resolve difficulties
• The solution to the problem lies within the
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Key principles of this approach
• Big problems do not need big solutions
• We need to catch hold of what is already
• It’s important to have a clear sense of
where you are heading
• Carry on doing what works
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Social Discipline Window
Do To
Do With
Do Nothing
Do For
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Do To (punitive)
• Detention
• Sanction
• Home- grounded, telling children of career
options, option choices,
• Theme - Young people feel put upon
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Do for (permissive)
• School- excusing, too much support,
• Home- homework done by parents,
• Theme- young people avoid taking any
responsibility for their actions
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Do nothing (neglectful)
All people give up
Allow young person to make own mistakes
“Its up to them now”
Laissez faire approach to weekends
Theme- young people lack boundaries
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Do with (restorative)
• Students have a stake in choice
• Career and option choices made
individually but in discussion with parents
• Parents engage with children in relation to
work but work is completed by children
• Encourage but not pressured
• Theme- most successful approach
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What are the questions we ask?
• What's gone well this week?
• What score would you give yourself for the
past week? (0-10 scale)
• Why?
• What score would you like to be?
• How would you get there
• Who will notice?
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All pupils want to do well in some
• We can all forget this- school, society,
friends and family
What can we all do
Remember all want to do well
Recognise the positives and praise
Always have positive expectations
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Pupil ownership
• Without pupils being involved conflict can
• “You must do some work?”
• School and work can become the way
young people choose to hurt parents when
troubles arise
• By all working together with an expectation
of success the school becomes a shared
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Part 2- How are the GCSE’s
The exam boards
Have you got the following?
Assessments (past exam papers),
Exam reports
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Public Examinations:
4 examining boards:
1) AQA
• Then follow ‘subject finder’:
• There are links to
Specifications (the syllabus)
Assessment material
Notice board
Examiners’ reports
Science, DT,
History (1/2),
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Public Examinations:
2) Edexcel
• Then Qualifications / GCSE’s from 2012
• When you reach subject page, select
correct qualification and scroll down to find
specification, assessment material and
examiner reports
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Public Examinations:
3) OCR
Then subjects and choose relevant GCSE
Useful documents
 Datasheets, Factsheets, Overviews & Info packs
 Information Briefs
 Markschemes and materials
 Specifications and Syllabuses
 Specimen assessment materials
 Student Guides and Materials
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Public Examinations:
• Select subject from drop down menu
Examiners report
Past Papers
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Controlled assessment
• Different to coursework as work is
completed in a controlled environment
during lesson time
• Some preparation will need to be completed
as part of homework
• Are on-going and will be part of lessons
throughout year 10 and 11
• Will come at different times of the year for
different subjects
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Frequently asked questions
What happens if the pupils miss / are late /
clash for a Public Examination?
– Clash: tell us as soon as possible (although
we try and identify them);
– specific arrangements will be made on an
individual basis
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Frequently asked questions
What happens if the pupils miss / are late /
clash for a Public Examination?
– There are strict regulations about what we
can do for pupils who are late; if problem
ring school immediately and get into school
as quickly as possible
– If pupils do not sit exam, no marks unless
there is a doctor’s note given to us
– If pupil is unwell, the best approach is to
come in and sit the exam, and then we can
put in Special Consideration report
(v. helpful if this is supported by doctor’s
note - can be obtained after the exam)
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Part 3: What do we as a school do
to support
• Targets
• Realistic targets based on Key Stage 3
• 8- A*
• 7- A
• 6- B
• 5- C
• 4- D
• 3- E
• 2- F
• 1- G
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Why do we have targets?
• Allows pupils to have an idea of what they
should achieve if they work reasonably well
• Allows the school to monitor progress
• Stress caused by high targets
• What happens if you feel the targets are too
• Can pupils become complacent?
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The Pastoral Team…
• Analyse data
• Praise letters
• Pastoral monitoring
• Constant thought about long term
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Who can you contact if there are
any problems?
• [email protected][email protected][email protected][email protected]
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Part 4- How can parents help?
• Encourage a sense of ambition- visits to
college, University early
• Some courses increasingly looking at
GCSE results- medicine and other
university courses
• School visits to East Surrey College
NESCOT, Guildford College, ‘Surrey
Opportunities Fair’
• Work experience- plan early
• Continuous informal discussion at home
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How do I start to work?
• Many pupils can find it very difficult to
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Safe and comfortable environment
– Basic preparation:
– Tidy room
– Tidy desk
– Filed notes
– No TV
– Sound?
– Organisation helps relieve stress
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– Equipment:
New stationary
All files, books, paper, pens, calculator near
Physiological factors
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Schools virtual learning environment
Pupils have passwords
Contact the school if you don’t have details
Online reporting
Past papers
Also resources on internet
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SAM Learning
• New, exciting on-line resource
• Pupils have passwords
• Contact the school if you don’t have details
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• Username: AshcombeSchool
• Password: AshcombeRoad
• Students have individual passwords
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• My maths
• Username- ashcombe
• Password- volume
• Past papers now widely available on net
through visiting exam board websites
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On-line documentaries
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Are your children members of the
• On-line catalogue allows books to be
ordered from across Surrey
Are you in a book club?
• Could you read set text from the English
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Books- Alistair Smith- Help your
child to succeed?
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How do pupils revise?
• Yr 11 evening in March 2015 and 2016
specifically on revision- all welcome
• Can you get involved and support the
• Mini tests
• Rewards
• Short bursts of work
• organisation
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Is the lifestyles conducive to
• School attendance and punctuality is key95% is aim
• Role of stress
• Weekends
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Achievement motivation
• def
An individual’s motivation to
achieve for its own sake.
• Individuals levels of this are regarded as
being fairly stable.
• Atkinson identified 2 types
• n.Ach
• The motive to achieve success to gain pride
and satisfaction
• n.Af
• The motive to avoid failure in order to avoid
shame and humiliation
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On offer
Of Success
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Characteristics of Naf People
Avoid challenges
Take the easy option
Take the very difficult option
Take no responsibility
Give up if not successful
Take their time to complete task if at all
Seek situations requiring little challenge
Avoid personal responsibility
Do not want feedback on performance
Avoids 50:50 situations
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Veroff’s 3 stages of
achievement motivation
• The Nach approach develops in 3 stages
– Autonomous competence stage
• A young performer is concerned with mastering the
task e.g. simple throwing and catching
– Social Comparison stage
• From the age of 6 youngsters not only perform the
skill but compare their efforts with others, e.g. so
the length of a throw compared to a friends is
– Integrated
• More adult stage, all forms of internal and external
standards are used to gauge performance
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Characteristics of Nach People
Enjoy competition
Welcome a challenge
Enjoy feedback
Take responsibility
Try harder after failure
Works to beat PB’s
High task persistence
Ability to complete task quickly
Willing to take risks
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How do I become a n.Ach?
(Growth Mindset)
– Positive experiences
– set realistic goals
– establish a non-evaluative
– reinforcement from parents and role
– develop high levels of self confidence
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Role of males
• Education in south east often seen as
female occupation
• Dad,
• Uncle
• Grandad
• Friends
• Parents evenings
• Sitting down and doing work together
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Main points
• Find balance between working hard and
working too much
• Devise revision timetable for outside
• "You can only do your best!“
• ‘Working With to (n) Achieve”