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messageHarris Boys - GCSE options
Posted by Ossito September 14, 05:09PM

Hello

Does anybody have experience of their children selecting GCSE options at Harris Boys?

We are applying for secondary schools this autumn. Looking at Harris' GCSE options information on their website, it seems that pupils take 5 compulsory GCSEs, plus a BTEC in Sport, and are then able to select a further 2 options, meaning that they would leave with 7 GCSES and 1 BTEC. The optional subjects appear to be relatively limited choice.

In contrast, the Charter East Dulwich requires pupils to take 5 compulsory GCSEs and then 4 options meaning that they would leave with 9 GCSEs, and a much wider choice of subjects.

Does anyone with experience of Harris Boys know the reasons for the more limited numbers / options and whether this has any effect on pupils' applications to sixth forms or universities?

messageRe: Harris Boys - GCSE options
Posted by Coach Beth September 15, 08:59AM

Hi there - My son goes to Charter ED but I was curious as I thought all secondary schools round here do 9 GCSE's. I think the difference is how Harris Boys presents the GCSES' Basically, English is two GCSE's English Literare and English Languarge. And Science counts as two as well. So at Charter ED it's compulsory to do English (English Lit and English Lang) Double Science (unless doing triple), maths, either French or Spanish, either History or Geography. That's almost the same as Harris Boys... except Harris Boys makes is compulsorary for them to to BTEC Sport.

Then, they need to pick a creative subject (art or music or design tech or dram).... then one option - could be GCSE PE or BTEC Sport, Enterprise or another creative subject.

Charter ED might have a couple more options I guess but it's pretty similiar I think.

messageRe: Harris Boys - GCSE options
Posted by NEJ September 15, 02:56PM

I asked Harris Dulwich Boys about thisÖ They say in year 11 boys can study English Lit and Eng Lang, Triple Science, Maths, Spanish and either History or Geography. All the boys do BTEC Sport but this is in their ordinary PE time so not instead of another subject. And then boys can choose two more option subject on top of that eg music, RE, Design Tech, Performing Arts. So I think thatís 10 subjects altogether. I think thatís right. I guess itís the sort of question to ask at the online open day which they are advertising on their website [www.harrisdulwichboys.org.uk]

messageRe: Harris Boys - GCSE options
Posted by Ole September 17, 11:46AM

I think what the OP is saying is that, according to what is published on the website, the range of GCSE options for Harris girls is bigger than the range of options for Harris boys.

Harris Girls GCSE options: History or Geography, Art, Photography, Business, Citizenship, Computer Science, Drama, Food prep and nutrition, PE, Product Design, Psychology, Sociology

Harris Boys GCSE options: History or Geography, Art, Music, RE, Design Technology.

Harris Boys then get to choose BTECS (not GCSES) in: Enterprise, Digital Information Technology, Performing Arts, Travel and Tourism.


In addition, Harris Girls offers Triple Science whereas Harris Boys offers Double Science.

So, according to the websites, Girls have a much wider choice for GCSEs.

Interesting that the Girls should have a much broader choice of subjects (and should I say, therefore opportunities?) than the Boys, considering it is the same Academy and serving the same community.

Renata, any thoughts as to why? I am aware that schools are free to set their own curriculum, but it seems strange that one of the few Boys school serving the local community is able to have such disparity compared to the Girls' equivalent? I mean, if for religious circumstances I chose to send my child to the local all-boys school, my son would have fewer choices than my neighbour who for the same reason sent their girl to the equivalent all-girls school. Should boys be disadvantaged for choosing single-sex education?

messageRe: Harris Boys - GCSE options
Posted by Monkey September 17, 12:34PM

Harris Girls didnít use to have a broad curriculum and have recently expanded their choice of subjects. Itís only in the last two years for example that they added French and Spanish to their modern foreign language curriculum. Prior to that, there was no choice and girls all did Italian as the only option. Perhaps the boysí school needs to catch up.

messageRe: Harris Boys - GCSE options
Posted by Ole September 17, 01:48PM

Monkey Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Harris Girls didnít use to have a broad curriculum
> and have recently expanded their choice of
> subjects. Itís only in the last two years for
> example that they added French and Spanish to
> their modern foreign language curriculum. Prior to
> that, there was no choice and girls all did
> Italian as the only option. Perhaps the boysí
> school needs to catch up.

Harris Boys have Spanish as their only language option (Key stage 3 and 4). Letís hope for the sake of the local boys that they do catch up and widen their curriculum! Or if they do offer more choices, they should update their website!

messageRe: Harris Boys - GCSE options
Posted by Monkey September 17, 02:25PM

Agree, Ole.


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