US high school student move to UK

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arasmom
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We are seriously considering moving to the UK (Cambridgeshire) if our current president gets reelected and would greatly appreciate any guidance you can provide.

Our kids are dual UK/US citizens. My just turned 15 year old son is a Sophomore in high school (UK grade 11).

Is it possible for him to apply to 6th form colleges, in particular in the Cambridge area without taking GCSE exams? If he needs to take them, how/when would he do this if we move in the summer of 2021?

As far as course work he is currently working on mostly college level course work at his high school and is dual enrolled at our local university. He is currently taking multivariable Calculus, AP Physics and college level English. He has completed and received 5s on AP Calc BC and AP Chemistry.

Since he doesn't turn 16 until middle of September, does this mean he will have to repeat year 11 in September 2021? What does one do if there are no courses available at the secondary level since he's so far ahead in his subjects?

Apologies for my ignorance with the UK system!
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999tigger
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(Original post by arasmom)
We are seriously considering moving to the UK (Cambridgeshire) if our current president gets reelected and would greatly appreciate any guidance you can provide.

Our kids are dual UK/US citizens. My just turned 15 year old son is a Sophomore in high school (UK grade 11).

Is it possible for him to apply to 6th form colleges, in particular in the Cambridge area without taking GCSE exams? If he needs to take them, how/when would he do this if we move in the summer of 2021?

As far as course work he is currently working on mostly college level course work at his high school and is dual enrolled at our local university. He is currently taking multivariable Calculus, AP Physics and college level English. He has completed and received 5s on AP Calc BC and AP Chemistry.

Since he doesn't turn 16 until middle of September, does this mean he will have to repeat year 11 in September 2021? What does one do if there are no courses available at the secondary level since he's so far ahead in his subjects?

Apologies for my ignorance with the UK system!
How old will your child be on 1 Sept in the year you intend to move back?
Has your child lived in the UK before? How recently and how long?
Whether a school accepts him is down to their discretion.
I doubt they will consider you until you are in the UK, but you can try.
The normal requirement are grades 6 and 7 to study A level.
You will need to speak to the school.
Everything revolves around the academic year which starts in September.

If you believe he is so far ahead then you can home school them or enrol them on online courses.
Education ceases to be free from 19 onwards.
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arasmom
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(Original post by 999tigger)
How old will your child be on 1 Sept in the year you intend to move back?
Has your child lived in the UK before? How recently and how long?
Whether a school accepts him is down to their discretion.
I doubt they will consider you until you are in the UK, but you can try.
The normal requirement are grades 6 and 7 to study A level.
You will need to speak to the school.
Everything revolves around the academic year which starts in September.

If you believe he is so far ahead then you can home school them or enrol them on online courses.
Education ceases to be free from 19 onwards.
Thank you for your reply. He will be turn 16 on the 15th September. He is young for grade here also, as he just made the age cutoff. Kids have not lived in the UK. I really would rather not homeschool as we had to do that for several years, but if were to do that, how difficult is it to apply to universities as homeschoolers? It's not uncommon here in the US, but didn't think that was common in the UK. Thanks
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RogerOxon
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(Original post by arasmom)
We are seriously considering moving to the UK (Cambridgeshire) if our current president gets reelected and would greatly appreciate any guidance you can provide.

Our kids are dual UK/US citizens. My just turned 15 year old son is a Sophomore in high school (UK grade 11).

Is it possible for him to apply to 6th form colleges, in particular in the Cambridge area without taking GCSE exams? If he needs to take them, how/when would he do this if we move in the summer of 2021?

As far as course work he is currently working on mostly college level course work at his high school and is dual enrolled at our local university. He is currently taking multivariable Calculus, AP Physics and college level English. He has completed and received 5s on AP Calc BC and AP Chemistry.

Since he doesn't turn 16 until middle of September, does this mean he will have to repeat year 11 in September 2021? What does one do if there are no courses available at the secondary level since he's so far ahead in his subjects?

Apologies for my ignorance with the UK system!
Thirteen years ago, we did the opposite - Cambridge to California.

You need to be careful about qualifying for home fee status for university, if they're planning on attending a UK one - it gets very expensive otherwise.

Most universities will accept three APs (plus the SAT1600 / ACT) for entry (college courses don't count). A few require five APs (you didn't mention which Physics APs he's doing - if could be two). Technically, I believe that they could apply for university now, although that would mean international fee status.
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arasmom
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(Original post by RogerOxon)
Thirteen years ago, we did the opposite - Cambridge to California.

You need to be careful about qualifying for home fee status for university, if they're planning on attending a UK one - it gets very expensive otherwise.

Most universities will accept three APs (plus the SAT1600 / ACT) for entry (college courses don't count). A few require five APs (you didn't mention which Physics APs he's doing - if could be two). Technically, I believe that they could apply for university now, although that would mean international fee status.
I hope your transition to the CA was a smooth one! My husband did the move from Cambridge to CA 20 years ago.

Yes, I understand there is a 3 year residency requirement, which I think we could qualify for since a gap year for my son would good for him before starting uni. However, we have no desire for him to start university early which is why he is at his current high school that can provide high level challenging courses whilst allowing him to be with mostly age peers. It sounds like he may be beyond A-level courses, including further maths? He will be taking Linear Algebra this spring and SAT 2 years ago that are 1560. Do you have any idea what a student could do in his situation, if he doesn't not want to attend college when he is 15/16? Thank you!
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RogerOxon
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(Original post by arasmom)
I hope your transition to the CA was a smooth one! My husband did the move from Cambridge to CA 20 years ago.
Yes - you've got to love the weather (although less so the fires). We're in the San Francisco Bay area, although might try Southern California at some point.

(Original post by arasmom)
Yes, I understand there is a 3 year residency requirement, which I think we could qualify for since a gap year for my son would good for him before starting uni.
Good - a lot of people assume that citizenship is sufficient, then get a very nasty surprise.

(Original post by arasmom)
However, we have no desire for him to start university early which is why he is at his current high school that can provide high level challenging courses whilst allowing him to be with mostly age peers. It sounds like he may be beyond A-level courses, including further maths?
My knowledge of UK A level courses is somewhat dated - over 30 years

He will be beyond A level in some areas, although, when he has time, he should look at the syllabi and past papers - I would expect some gaps. Physics in the UK used to be closer to AP Physics 1 and 2, with both Physics C APs adding calculus, which A level didn't.

I'd also get him to look at the Oxford Mathematics Admissions Test and STEP papers. These push understanding of A level material further. The stereotypical view of APs is that they are more concerned with speed than in-depth understanding, so these would be interesting, and, hopefully, fun.

(Original post by arasmom)
He will be taking Linear Algebra this spring and SAT 2 years ago that are 1560. Do you have any idea what a student could do in his situation, if he doesn't not want to attend college when he is 15/16? Thank you!
Top UK universities will only accept qualifications that are externally moderated, so college courses aren't accepted to satisfy their entry requirements. They do demonstrate interest though, so are very useful to have done. You may also have an issue with the elapsed time since taking their APs and SAT. I'd recommend talking to an admissions tutor at his top target university, who will hopefully have some advice on how to spend the next few years productively, without getting bored.
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arasmom
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(Original post by RogerOxon)
Yes - you've got to love the weather (although less so the fires). We're in the San Francisco Bay area, although might try Southern California at some point.


Good - a lot of people assume that citizenship is sufficient, then get a very nasty surprise.


My knowledge of UK A level courses is somewhat dated - over 30 years

He will be beyond A level in some areas, although, when he has time, he should look at the syllabi and past papers - I would expect some gaps. Physics in the UK used to be closer to AP Physics 1 and 2, with both Physics C APs adding calculus, which A level didn't.

I'd also get him to look at the Oxford Mathematics Admissions Test and STEP papers. These push understanding of A level material further. The stereotypical view of APs is that they are more concerned with speed than in-depth understanding, so these would be interesting, and, hopefully, fun.


Top UK universities will only accept qualifications that are externally moderated, so college courses aren't accepted to satisfy their entry requirements. They do demonstrate interest though, so are very useful to have done. You may also have an issue with the elapsed time since taking their APs and SAT. I'd recommend talking to an admissions tutor at his top target university, who will hopefully have some advice on how to spend the next few years productively, without getting bored.
Thank you so much for all this info. I was feeling overwhelmed with where/what I should be researching and you've pointed me to some areas to focus on. My husband never finished with 6th form and it's also been many years so we are sorely lacking in knowledge. I really appreciate it.

Glad the smoke has cleared up - it was awful. We left the bay area a few years ago for the school and although we miss CA very much, we don't miss the traffic!
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