Students are considered for entry to public examinations on the recommendation of the headteacher and the teaching staff. Students will be counselled and parents will be consulted but, ultimately, the decision on the type and level of examination for which the student is entered is a professional one.
Entry and examination fees for subjects which students take on the recommendation of the school are paid for by the governors under the following circumstances:
- Most students will sit one or more GCSE subjects at the age of 15 or 16; the majority of students will sit between six and ten subjects and some may be offered more if, in the opinion of the school, they have the capacity to do so and sufficient course options are available.
- Controlled assessments are an essential component of many GCSE courses and all students are expected to complete such assessments by the dates required. In exceptional circumstances, the headteacher may exercise discretion by not entering a candidate for one or more GCSE subjects if there is evidence that a student is unwilling or unable to fulfil controlled assessment requirements. Failure to complete controlled assessments by the required date may result in the entry being withdrawn.
- Students will not generally re-sit GCSE examinations unless particular qualifications are urgently required. Counselling should be sought from school staff before any decision is made. The headteacher has the right to veto any individual application for a re-sit, but the parent may then seek a private entry, if appropriate.
- In the Sixth Form, a range of courses will be available including, where appropriate BTECs. Applied Double Award A Levels, GCE A Levels and GCE AS Levels are also available for students in this age group. It is normal practice for an individual programme of study to be agreed upon between the student and the Head of Sixth Form, subject to the range of courses normally available.
- In the majority of cases, consultation with parents takes place in the November preceding the January and Summer examinations.
- Students are required to pay for re-sits and a bill will be issued prior to the entry. An entry will be made upon receipt of the payment. Please note that if a payment is not made by the date given, it may double or even triple, as the examination boards impose late entry penalty fees. The Sixth Form funds all first re-sits in GCSE English and Mathematics examinations for students who have not obtained a grade 4 in Year 11.
An appeals procedure exists concerning internal assessments conducted by this centre which are submitted to awarding bodies contributing to GCSE and GCE awards. The following points apply:
- A written appeals procedure is available to all candidates undertaking public examinations;
- All candidates are informed that an appeals procedure, which relates to decisions taken about internal assessments, exists at this centre;
- The designated member of staff responsible for the management of internal appeals is the deputy headteacher who is also responsible for the dissemination of the procedures concerning an appeal. The headteacher will be informed of the existence and the outcome of all internal appeals;
- Each appeal will be considered by a panel consisting of the head of department of the subject concerned, the deputy headteacher and the head of Sixth Form;
- During the course of an appeal, a candidate may be supported in the presentation of his/her case by a parent, guardian or friend;
- A written record of all appeals will be held at the centre and will include the outcome of the appeal and the reasons for the decision taken. A copy will be sent to the candidate.
Candidates will be able to have access to the following:
- the marks awarded by the centre for an internal assessment;
- all comments made by the centre relating to this assessed work;
- any correspondence which has taken place between the centre and the awarding body concerning this assessment;
- information concerning the sampling of assessed work by the awarding body;
- the moderated mark awarded by the awarding body; and
- the procedures laid down by the awarding body for the conduct of internal assessment.
The appeal will include a review of the internal assessments made by the centre and a check will be made that the correct procedures were carried out. All appeals will be resolved by the date of the last externally assessed examination paper.
The centre will inform the awarding body of the outcome of an appeal and full details will be made available to the awarding body on request.