1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

GCSE Results

Discussion in 'Personal' started by hermitcrabbe, Aug 23, 2015.

  1. hermitcrabbe

    hermitcrabbe Established commenter

    I do not think I have ever posted on Personal before. It is a risk. However, I am at a bit of a loss and could do with a bit of advice. Not being one for many details.

    Little crabbette has just had her GCSE results. I thought they were good. They were certainly the best in her school. 9A* and 3A. She is inconsolable about the 3 A's.

    This is made worse by the local rag showing a bunch of " Didn't they do wells" with a full string of A*'s and some clever chappie with a GCSE in Maths at 10 years old ( the usual).

    I just do not know what to say to her. She isn't a failure to me.

  2. jubilee

    jubilee Star commenter

    I'm at a loss too as to how she could possibly feel upset at her results.

    Hazarding a guess, I'd say that it's the result of a years of micro-management of pupils' achievements at school, with every piece of work wrongly being given an NC level and fictitious NC sub-levels.

    If NC levels had only been allocated at the end of each Key Stage, as the documentation stipulates, our young people would not be so neurotic.

    I expect that your daughter has had years of reaching all her NC targets and thus can't cope with not getting the top grades in everything.

    With some subjects, pupils who should gain higher grades are brought down by collective marking for some parts of the exam. In Drama, you can be ace in a performance module but others in your group can be mediocre or less and the overall group mark will affect everyone's final grade.

    Pupils can also lose out when their work has not been selected for moderation and the outside examiner judges that the work that is requested has been marked too generously by the teacher. My niece is a very talented artist and was disappointed with her Grade B at GCSE. It transpired that one pupil, allocated an A* by the teacher, had her work requested by the board. The girl was always treated favourably because of massive parental involvement in the school (their contacts getting visiting speakers for free etc).

    Anyway, the girls' efforts were downgraded by the Board and everyone else's were similarly downgraded.

    Niece went on to do A level Art elsewhere and got the top grade.
  3. BelleDuJour

    BelleDuJour Star commenter

    Fantastic set of results.

    All I can say is silly girl. Really. 'Inconsolable' over 3As? She needs to get a grip.

    At the end of the day it will make no difference.

    ROSIEGIRL Lead commenter

    Fantastic results - but I would guess she has perfectionist tendencies!

    Two of my daughters are rather perfectionist, to varying degrees (I blame their dad - they certainly don't get that particular trait from me) and they got really excellent exam results over the years, but were very self critical.

    Over time they have been able to put things into perspective and laugh at their reactions. GCSE results become less important when you do A Levels, which in turn become less important when you go to university .. and so on.

    It's partly down to personality and partly to maturity. She is not a 'silly girl' and you have my sympathy in having to deal with her reaction. I've no advice to offer other than hang in there!
  5. BelleDuJour

    BelleDuJour Star commenter

    I think she is being silly because she has got it all out of perspective.

    Most students would be thrilled to get 3As, never mind 3As and the rest A*s.

    Reality check in order and, like Rosie says, it all gets less important from now on.

    FWIW in my experience of dealing with university entries the universities clump A/A* together and really take little notice of whether a students has A or A*.

    Am guessing with the 'new' numerical system grade 9 will soon be surpassed by new grade 10...then 11......then 12. C'est la vie.
  6. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Your daughter has done extremely well, and you must be pleased. Well done to your daughter.

    We all get score cards in we win some and lose some. She will mature and learn how to deal with disappointment which is what happens when we grow up. She will have other disappointments and you can help her to know that we do not always get what we expect but it is not the end of the world and to be grateful and proud for what she did achieve.
  7. hermitcrabbe

    hermitcrabbe Established commenter

    I am pleased. She is not. She sees those three A grades as the end of her hopes of going to Cambridge ( her choice nothing to do with me). It seems the school told ( and of course they know more than I do - always, everyone always knows more than I do).

    Personally I do not see how A's in ....Art, Home Economics and French are going to be decisive in her future.

    I can say no more to her. Presently she is in her room sobbing her heart out.

    Thanks for the comments.

    ROSIEGIRL Lead commenter

    The school are wrong, if that's what they said.

    Oxbridge entrance is far more complicated and depends on much more that GCSE results. Her results are just fine as a starting point.

    For what it's worth, my eldest daughter - with 6A* and 6As went to Cambridge - funnily enough she was rejected outright by Durham, who seemed to have a blanket minimum 6A* policy!

    Please tell your daughter her results are brilliant and the world is her oyster - no doors are closed to her!
  9. ValentinoRossi

    ValentinoRossi Star commenter

    hermitcrabbe, you have my sympathy in that you are finding it difficult to deal with a daughter you clearly love dearly.

    But I agree totally with BelleDuJour. I'm sure she is lovely. That, however, does not stop her from displaying a ridiculously OTT reaction to the exam results. Honestly, if I were her HoY, I would be congratulating her on fab results and - if she was "inconsolable" - telling her to pull herself together and stop being such a drama queen.

    BTW, the school is completely incorrect in its advice regarding Oxbridge entry.
  10. smoothnewt

    smoothnewt Star commenter

    From this comment I am inferring that you don't have the best of relationships with her. Is there a problem with communication?

    She has done fantastically well, and should be proud of herself. Unfortunately there is a type of teenage girl for whom their best is never good enough; those in highly competitive, selective schools often self-harm, turn bulimic, anorexic, etc. A few tears are nothing compared to this, but in your place I'd be working flat out to boost her confidence.

    What kind of school does she go to? As has been said in previous posts, they clearly haven't a clue about Oxbridge entry: her results would be absolutely fine at this stage in the process.

    The more important question is what does she want to do - apart from going to Cambridge? Is that an end in itself, or is there something very specific she wants to study? On her current (mental) form I'd suggest you help her seriously think about what it is she wants to do long-term, and the best way of getting there. To me it seems that she may not be psychologically robust enough to withstand the pressure of trying to get into Oxbridge. I'd be encouraging her to look at other "good" options, and there are plenty of them out there.

  11. hermitcrabbe

    hermitcrabbe Established commenter

    Smoothnewt. I am a parent. I am always wrong. Someone else always knows better when you are 16 I think.

    As for her school,well,its not exactly a top drawer one I am afraid. I am not sure they would know what Cambridge wants if it reared up and bit them on the bum! Therein lies the problem. However, options for other places of study are limited in our area. Main school is catchment comprehensive ( just been put in Special Measures just before the holidays - they kept that quiet!)

    We have looked at other available places and it was a toss up as to whether she would gain by leaving and doing her last 18 months elsewhere or staying put. She wanted to stay put but I am beginning to wonder if she is changing her mind - a bit late in the day with a week to go.

    I have left her to come around. When she is in a better frame of mind, I will try and discuss it.

    Cambridge has many attractions, and her grand parents live there. Its also one of the

    "nearest" although its a long drive daily.

    It is a difficult time.

  12. hermitcrabbe

    hermitcrabbe Established commenter

    subjects: Philosophy or maybe Theology or Human political and social sciences.

    So an education for educations sake (and I have no problem with that).

    Her A level choices English Language and Literature, Mathematics Philosophy and Ethics, Psychology and Biology. She has A* in four of the five of those ( Psychology is new to her).
  13. mandala1

    mandala1 Occasional commenter

    This. She needs to learn to cope with 'disappointment' in a more balanced way - if she doesn't she's in for a whole heap of hurt when she enters the world of work.
  14. smoothnewt

    smoothnewt Star commenter

    But you are a teacher, no? Does that count for nothing?

    Here's a link to a useful document, which she would do well to read for sound advice. She should make sure she understands what "facilitating" subjects are.

  15. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Time is a great healer. Say nothing but the most innocent of platitudes.

    I do think she's a silly girl but that's the job-description when you're 16. I'd be surprised if she weren't being stroppy about something!

    This too will pass.

    Rule of 5.

    How important will this be in 5






    End of September and she'll be a bit miffed.
  16. mandala1

    mandala1 Occasional commenter

    Can't mend the squiggled together lines in my post.

    TES your website is ****.
  17. moonpenny

    moonpenny Occasional commenter

  18. smoothnewt

    smoothnewt Star commenter

    She's not planning to do all of those at AS, is she? That's at least six, by my reckoning. Given her predisposition to anxiety and perfectionism, I'd recommend 4 maximum. And she would do well to ensure she chooses "facilitating" subjects from that list.
  19. cosmosinfrance

    cosmosinfrance Star commenter

    I'm completely out of the loop regarding secondary education - having taught in FE and my children well grown now - but I can't help wondering what have we come to when an A isn't considered good enough.

    Never mind the debate re dumbing down, the pressure both external and self imposed on today's children must be overwhelming. Your daughter is being silly but, as others have said, that goes with the territory. I hope she can be brought to see that she has done extremely well.

    I like GDW's rule of 5 - I shall adopt that.
  20. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    I think it goes:







    I'd ditch one of the Ps. A lot of reading, a lot of writing. Her time would be better spent doing a spot of volunteering or joining a choir. Not just because it'd make her a more well-rounded individual but because it would appeal to a top-flight university as a 'string to her bow'.

Share This Page