“It’s been great being able to start A levels in subjects I’m good at like Politics and Economics while resitting GCSEs I didn’t pass first time round like Science.”
amrit dhillon, year 12 student, joined RIC in 2010 from st george’s school, gravesend
1 year gcse retakes
If a student needs to retake the bulk of their GCSE courses, either to improve grades for their university entry profile or to pass their key 5 so they can proceed to A level study RIC can help.
Each year a small number of GCSE resit students join us with few or no grade C passes and finish the year with 6 or 7 and are able to start A levels. It shows what can be done when students have the determination to improve their grades.
GCSE retake course students benefit from a more adult, sixth form environment, small group teaching and a structured revision and exam preparation programme. Students needing to retake most of their GCSEs join a one year intensive course where subject content is re taught and coursework and practical work redone. Some GCSE resit students join RIC intending to apply to other independent schools for sixth form following an intensive GCSE resit programme. Others proceed to our own sixth form.
resit gcse alongside starting a levels at ric
Where students just need to retake a few missing key GCSEs it is often possible to combine doing this with starting A level study and still completing sixth form studies within a two year period.
Focussed GCSE resit courses in Maths and English run from September to November and January. Science GCSE can be retaken over the course of a year alongside AS study. It is quite usual for RIC students to start a two year A level programme while they resit GCSEs as they go along. This avoids the need for a demoralising full GCSE resit year. GCSE resit classes are timetabled around sixth form classes. Students study with those in a similar position, they do not have to go back and attend year 11 classes. Suitability for this programme depends on GCSE results and the choice of A level subjects.
Rochester student Freddie Topps is celebrating a dramatic turnaround in academic fortunes and an offer from one of the country’s most competitive universities.
Two years ago Freddie joined RIC from a local FE College with an uncompleted BTEC and without key GCSE passes in Maths and English. After two years of A levels and GCSE retakes at RIC he now has his missing GCSEs, is on track for three top A level grades and a place at Edinburgh College of Art.
During his time at RIC Freddie had the opportunity to work alongside visiting lecturer, the iconic Billy Childish, founder of the Stuckist movement and local Medway artist, musician and provocateur.
This seems a good opportunity to say how pleased we are with the progress Freddie has made in his first year at RIC. He is in his own words ”very proud” to be part of the college. We are more than delighted with Freddie’s AS and GCSE results. This has been an excellent year for him. I know Freddie is particularly pleased to now be able to draw a line under the English and Maths GCSEs after his retakes! Freddie will be returning in September and we are confident that he will continue to develop under the care and guidance of your fantastic staff.”
While media attention is generally monopolised by headline grabbing high achievers RIC was particularly proud of A level student Omar Iqbal in 2011. Omar joined RIC from Temple School in Strood with no GCSE passes. After a one year GCSE retake course and two years of sixth form he now has three A level passes- including English Literature- and has secured a place at Canterbury Christchurch University.
Many local selective schools will only allow students to start A levels with As or Bs at GCSE. The success of students like Omar demonstrates that with GCSE retake courses one bad year doesn’t have to mean the end to higher education dreams.
GCSE results are not always the best predictor of A level success and RIC has a more flexible approach than many independent schools to sixth form entry. GCSE retake courses in English, Maths and Sciences are offered each year to Year 12 students who successfully follow AS courses in other subjects. This approach allows students to move forward and proceed to university without the need for a full GCSE resit year.