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What can I do if I don't think i'll get 5 good GCSE's? Watch

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    Hi, This is my first post since it's the first time I've needed 'education help', although I've been reading posts on the forum for some time.

    I am very able but I have missed ALLOT of school because of illness. I have missed controlled assessments in many subjects and my geography and chemistry teachers have put me in for foundation tier exams which limits me to a C grade, no matter how well I do in the exam. since controlled assessments make up (I think) 25% of the chemistry and geography exams - and since i'm limited to a C in the exams - I will probably end up with a D grade GCSE in both those subjects.

    I need 5 GCSE's at C or above to get into my school sixth form, which is my planned route to university. If I don't get in then quite frankly, i'm screwed.
    What can I do to make sure I get the 5 GCSE's required? Am I allowed to do controlled assessments outside of the normal date? Can I get my school to allow me to sit higher tier exams for geography and chemistry? Can I pay to sit additional exams in a subject I already excel at as a private student without doing the coursework? Should I be consulting the school careers advisor or someone else who can tell me what my options are?
    I really need every, and any idea possible. If you made the effort to read this then thank you! I think I have written quite a bit.
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    Personally I would speak to your tutor or equivalent and enquire about retaking the year. From what i read on here, having good gcses is important for getting into a good university (although i have very average gcse's but i went as a mature student through a different route) So if youre struggling to scrape 5 at C grade this year, you may be better off resitting the whole year. Im not sure if this is a normal option for many students, but you say that you have been ill, so clearly have extenuating circumstances.

    IMO, universities would prefer you to have a decent set of gcse's having spent an extra year completing them, as long as you can show extenuating circumstances, than for you to have poor results and barely scraping through.
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    First things first, talk to your head of year/key stage and parents about your options, then possibly see the headteacher with your parents. This isn't a small concern, and that's what headteachers are there for anyway.

    Secondly, talk to your subject teachers and ask if there is a possibility for you to retake CATs (there probably is, you don;t have to hand them in until a certain date later on). If not, try to convince them to let you do the higher tier cos you're working hard etc, and you need to get a better grade for 6th form. Then show them in class how you are more than a C student.

    Thirdly, you can apply for other subs as a private candidate (if not at your school, then a college probably?, but beware that it'll look odd if you have certificates from two diff institutions). Just make sure it's not something stupid like childcare or whatever. Again, discuss this with your head of year and parents and see what they suggest. If you desperately need to and your school say no, you can always get your parents in.

    Finally, work hard but don;t stress/worry. It'll all (prob) work out in the end. :-)
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    What about resits? I was put in for geography foundation last year and managed a good C. Will most schools (or any, for that matter) allow me to resit an exam but at HIGHER instead?
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    Is this with special consideration? My friend was messed around with her room arrangements because she gets extra time, put in a plea for special consideration and she got some extra marks.

    Many schools will give leeway to people with extenuating circumstances. I know somebody who didn't do very well in her GCSE's, certainly not as well as she could have done, but her mother died in the September before, so they understood she couldn't have done her best. She was reaccepted into the sixth form.

    Another friend didn't get 5 good GCSE's either, but is currently studying level 3 health and social care. This limits the universities you could go on to, but is a good alternative to A-Levels.

    Your final option is to resit some exams next year. Given some time for your writing style to mature it may be easier for you to do this.

    In the end, it's your choice, and who knows, you could surprise yourself.


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