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    Hey guys, don't know if this is the right place to post about this, but basically one of my chem teachers is going on maternity leave next Friday and I've had 2 lessons with her placement. I'm currently in year 12 and looking to apply to Cambridge, so my AS exams are really important this summer. Unfortunately, my new teacher doesn't actually have a degree related to chemistry and doesn't even have an a level or GCSE in it himself... He hasn't taught key stage 5 for 13 years and has spent substantial amounts of both lessons on his phone. He is even giving us sheets to independently research out of the text book in the lesson, when we only have 6 taught lessons a fortnight.

    I'm really worried because he is just confusing me and doesn't seem to have a clue what he is doing and I don't know whether I am within my rights to query this with the head of science at my school (my other chem teacher) or to raise it with another teacher and ask for help in approaching the head of department. All I know is since yesterday I don't want to go to 4/6 chem lessons anymore (the ones I have him) because he is stressing me out and I'm never going to learn and get the grades I need lime this. My mum has it on email from the head of sixth form that we would have a subject specialist for all lessons - and I wouldn't call my new chem teacher a specialist. Admittedly, this was before our pregnant teacher was pregnant, but it feels like we are being punished. They have a student teacher in who is teaching half of the year 13 lessons (alongside the pregnant teacher, so therefore now alongside the new guy) who is a chem specialist, meaning that between the student teacher and head of department they have two specialists. I don't understand school's logic.


    Do I query it or do I just accept that I'm gonna fail chem and not get into the uni of my dreams because of this?? Sorry if this sounds like a rant but I'm very cross.

    Charlotte 😕


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    If you're not happy I would definitely query it, just explain your problem and I'm sure the school will want to help. Don't let this put you off what you want to do in the future; never accept failure!! 😅
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    Or just self-teach yourself everything, it's not hard. Not if you're Cambridge material.
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    You need to tell the head teacher. Is anyone else in your class suffering as well? If a group of you go complain to the head then he/she should do something about it. You should still complain regardless. Your the one thats going to suffer in the long run if you dont do something about it. Where on earth do they find these people to teach??

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    I'm also applying to Cambridge (different subject) in the same year as you. I essentially self-teach two of my A Levels, there's no reason why you can't. If anything, it's good preparation for being an independent thinker and learner.
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    Well, I like seeing things from other peoples perspectives - students and teachers alike, so it's not great that your teacher has put you in this position. Don't fret though - It seems that you will be better off self-teaching especially as someone mentioned that you're aiming for Cambridge. There are great benefits to having a great teacher no doubt, but from what you describe you will do a lot better without this kind of teacher - seems like a nightmare truth be told. But rest assured, with hardwork you can get where you want to be by yourself.
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    (Original post by rayofsunshine98)
    Hey guys, don't know if this is the right place to post about this, but basically one of my chem teachers is going on maternity leave next Friday and I've had 2 lessons with her placement. I'm currently in year 12 and looking to apply to Cambridge, so my AS exams are really important this summer. Unfortunately, my new teacher doesn't actually have a degree related to chemistry and doesn't even have an a level or GCSE in it himself... He hasn't taught key stage 5 for 13 years and has spent substantial amounts of both lessons on his phone. He is even giving us sheets to independently research out of the text book in the lesson, when we only have 6 taught lessons a fortnight.

    I'm really worried because he is just confusing me and doesn't seem to have a clue what he is doing and I don't know whether I am within my rights to query this with the head of science at my school (my other chem teacher) or to raise it with another teacher and ask for help in approaching the head of department. All I know is since yesterday I don't want to go to 4/6 chem lessons anymore (the ones I have him) because he is stressing me out and I'm never going to learn and get the grades I need lime this. My mum has it on email from the head of sixth form that we would have a subject specialist for all lessons - and I wouldn't call my new chem teacher a specialist. Admittedly, this was before our pregnant teacher was pregnant, but it feels like we are being punished. They have a student teacher in who is teaching half of the year 13 lessons (alongside the pregnant teacher, so therefore now alongside the new guy) who is a chem specialist, meaning that between the student teacher and head of department they have two specialists. I don't understand school's logic.


    Do I query it or do I just accept that I'm gonna fail chem and not get into the uni of my dreams because of this?? Sorry if this sounds like a rant but I'm very cross.

    Charlotte 😕


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    Right, you are definitely allowed to query the actions of your chemistry and get other chemistry teachers to help you with things that you are stuck on. Does your school have a head of chemistry as well as a head of science?
    I have a similar thing happening to me and its been going on for years
    I would rather talk to you privately about how to go about doing this
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    Not it's only a small science department of 8 so it's one head of department, but I'm gonna talk to her


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    Apparently his degree is biochemistry and geology, and he wasn't as annoying today, it's like he's got the measure of my class... But at the same time, my mum is still livid and doesn't want him to teach me anymore and I don't know what to do


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    In all honesty you shouldn't be relying on teachers to teach you everything and to get you to understand everything if you plan to go to university, especially Cambridge.

    Sure it sucks that he's a crappy teacher, but once you get to uni you'll be in for a big shock if you're expecting to be spoon fed everything all through education. You'll be at an advantage to learn how to self teach and become and independent learner now to be honest.

    Work hard and work smart and you'll be alright.
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    (Original post by rayofsunshine98)
    Apparently his degree is biochemistry and geology..
    Which is it? Biochem/Geology combo would be so unusual as to not existing.
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    (Original post by get_dem_A_stars)
    Which is it? Biochem/Geology combo would be so unusual as to not existing.
    It doesn't necessarily have to be one or the other. Quite a few universities, particulay Scottish ones offer flexible and joint honour degrees. And often in combinations that aren't necessarily related to one another.

    My sister took an honours degree with 3 different subjects.
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    (Original post by SophieSmall)
    It doesn't necessarily have to be one or the other. Quite a few universities, particulay Scottish ones offer flexible and joint honour degrees. And often in combinations that aren't necessarily related to one another.

    My sister took an honours degree with 3 different subjects.
    I wrote utter nonsense so I deleted it. Brain fart !!!!!
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    (Original post by get_dem_A_stars)
    Reading the OP post I think the word gibberish comes to mind. And the biochem/geology combo is probably part of that gibberish.
    Doesn't look like gibberish to me.
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    (Original post by SophieSmall)
    Doesn't look like gibberish to me.
    Nor me.

    I replied not only to the wrong post but the wrong damn thread. Ooops.
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    He went to Keele university, I know that much.

    I can teach myself, but when my teacher, who is like meant to be there to help, is actually confusing me to the point of wanting to truant his lessons because it's making me feel so bad about myself that really isn't a good thing. And also, I have really low confidence in myself (as in I will sometimes have a meltdown because I feel like I can't do it; I also have quite bad anxiety about exams after a couple of really bad experiences at GCSE last summer) so feeling like my teachers are on the same side as me makes my life a bit less scary.

    But he was actually okay today I think, I know our pregnant teacher has had words with him (she told me this evening, when I was helping at parents evening) because he spent all lesson playing candy crush and similar games and was giving us cutting and sticking tasks and made us watch an irrelevant video (on endo and exothermic reactions and suitable for like year 7) but he actually worked with us today which was good. I kind of feel slightly less scared now.


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    Similar thing happened to me last year. I stopped going to a majority of my biology lessons, paid a tutor and spent my missed time teaching myself. I got a B (almost full ums in one of my exams). The rest of my class: two got a D, two got an E, rest was a U. It's possible and it's not too late.

    Tbf, it sounds like you took the right course of action raising the alarm so well done

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