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amanda12

Moving between UK and Oz education systems

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Hi all

 

Hoping there are some experienced migrants/teachers parents who can help.

 

OH could have a job lined up in WA on a 457, excellent job and development opportunity, fantastic looking place, good relocation package, fab salary. All looks good. We are still in the dilemma of wether to go and have decided the best approach for us ( know it's personal) is to look at this as. A 3 yr project, re-evaluating every year or so. This means I need to plan and consider an escape route.

 

Has anyone got experience of moving back to the UK with school age kids? My oldest struggles a little (very bright a couple of years ahead in reading/numeracy), bit behind in writing (can't be arsed to do it to be honest) and his concentration is far from great. He is in year 4 and turns 9 in June. Youngest is (besides a pain with attitude) very bright, on gifted and talented register, working on yr 5 reading comprehension, 2 yrs aheadin writing and yr ahead in numeracy.

 

What I'm worried about is, if we go and come back, when is the best time to return to minimise disruption for the kids? I was of the mind that coming back before the oldest starts GCSE work would be best, that way transition to A levels may be better and then uni entry? This would mean returning when he is in yr 9. I think the younger one will be fine as she would be back in plenty time.

 

I've looked at schools and found a really good one so feel happy that they will be getting a good education there. I am concerned whether they will miss out on anything and if we should move between the two. I've looked for comparisons between school curriculums but can't find very much. Does anyone know how they compare and what steps we can take to try bridge any gaps? Wondering whether extra tuition may help ( number 1 has a tutor now as one on one helps his concentration).

 

Sorry about the garble!!!!!!

 

Thanks in anticipation.

:)

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You should probably pm Caramac, unless she sees this post, as she has done it with her kids. Essentially, though, I think you are right, as long as you are back before the GCSE merry go round the easier it will be. There will be some subjects that will require some remediation (maths is the one that springs instantly to mind) but generally the kids should be OK. You will have much more trouble if you dont get back in time for them to start their GCSE course with their age cohort.

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Guest destinationoz

Like your honest post ...

I can't help I'm afraid but having an 8 year old and going out this year - thinking of coming back in 5 yrs when he goes into year 9 - I'd be very intersted in any comments or advice x

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From my experience Quoll's right.

I would say that it really doesn't matter too much for the humanities, but for what I call the 'building block' subjects, such as science and maths (and to a degree foreign languages) you might find that your children need a bit of extra help to get to the level their peers will be at by year 9 in the UK.

We moved to Australia for the second time in 2009 and were told by the girls' school there that they were 2 - 3 years ahead of their peers, especially in science and maths.

A lot depends on the school your children attend (our's was good for languages, but a friend who has their daughter at school in Perth has been very disappointed because they have been learning the same Italian phrases since year 1 with not much progress!). There is no real Australian curriculum - the schools are different, so it's important to choose carefully if you plan on coming back here for the important years.

We came back after one year this time and all of them had a fair amount of catching up to do (years 10, 9 and 7), especially for GCSE work.

 

Good luck. It does take a bit of getting used to if you have academic children who enjoy schoolwork like my older two. My youngest thought she was in heaven because she didn't have to work so hard!

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Guest destinationoz

So is that to say generally education is not as good in Aus as it is in the UK (public system rather than private ) and I know this is a huge generalisation thou!! Our son is not the most academic in the beginning!! Thanks Caramac and Quoll

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Guest Bath2Brisbane
Like your honest post ...

I can't help I'm afraid but having an 8 year old and going out this year - thinking of coming back in 5 yrs when he goes into year 9 - I'd be very intersted in any comments or advice x

 

Having recently told my 7 year old that we are moving to Australia, after which she sobbed and sobbed :sad::, I wonder how a fourteen year old would take the news that you're moving back again? :no:

 

Nikki

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I'm not sure whether it's better or worse, just different. It doesn't matter if you plan on staying in one country or the other, only if you keep hopping backwards and forwards - like us!:wink: and it depends what you're used to and what your children are like.

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We came back after one year this time and all of them had a fair amount of catching up to do (years 10, 9 and 7), especially for GCSE work.

 

Thanks for posting Caramac, really really helpful. Please could I ask what remedial work you did with your children this time? Are you still in the UK? Have they caught up ok? S yea doesn't seem long at all, are you saying the children went to Oz 2-3 years ahead and after only one year they were behind on your return?

 

I think daughter will be ok as she has a real work ethos. Oldest can't be bothered and isn't overly confident so if he sees he is a bit behind, he may just give up so I think we would really have to watch him.

 

Please could I ask why you've moved between the two so much?

 

Thanks again

 

Amanda

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You should probably pm Caramac, unless she sees this post, as she has done it with her kids. Essentially, though, I think you are right, as long as you are back before the GCSE merry go round the easier it will be. There will be some subjects that will require some remediation (maths is the one that springs instantly to mind) but generally the kids should be OK. You will have much more trouble if you dont get back in time for them to start their GCSE course with their age cohort.

 

Thanks quoll. Pre GCSE seems sensible to me. I think if we waited longer, we would have higher education and the second would be following on then the third ( who is only a baby now). Before we knew it we'd be staying.

 

Thanks again.

 

Amanda

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We came back after one year this time and all of them had a fair amount of catching up to do (years 10, 9 and 7), especially for GCSE work.

 

Thanks for posting Caramac, really really helpful. Please could I ask what remedial work you did with your children this time? Are you still in the UK? Have they caught up ok? S yea doesn't seem long at all, are you saying the children went to Oz 2-3 years ahead and after only one year they were behind on your return?

 

I think daughter will be ok as she has a real work ethos. Oldest can't be bothered and isn't overly confident so if he sees he is a bit behind, he may just give up so I think we would really have to watch him.

 

Please could I ask why you've moved between the two so much?

 

Thanks again

 

Amanda

 

We moved because of my oh's work, except this time. I came back because my older two were so unhappy at school. My oh is still in Aus.

They were 2 - 3 years ahead when we got there and, yes, they still had catching up to do when they got back. The older one had missed the first term of her GCSE courses, so had to catch up with all that work.

Her school have let her do her major English work on Romeo and Juliet instead of Macbeth, which the others had studied, because she'd studied R and J in Australia. It has been the school (which is the school they were at before we went to Sydney, so they already knew the girls well) who have helped them catch up and the girls have really helped themselves too (they were just so happy to be back!!)

I'm sure your children will be fine if you come back in time for year 9. At our school the GCSE work seems to start in the summer term of that year. They will gain more than they lose from the experience - my lot have a knowledge of Australian history and geography that they wouldn't otherwise have and they have a broader outlook on life than some of their friends who have never left Norfolk!

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Thanks for that Caramac. It's good to hear that they have settled well back into UK life. Sound like you've had a rollercoaster over the last few years. Hope it stays on the up for them.

 

I take your point re life experience and this is something we've discussed. Are the children glad they did it all or do u think they would have rather stayed put? Mine swing between wanting to go and staying put.

 

Thanks again

 

A

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Thanks for that Caramac. It's good to hear that they have settled well back into UK life. Sound like you've had a rollercoaster over the last few years. Hope it stays on the up for them.

 

I take your point re life experience and this is something we've discussed. Are the children glad they did it all or do u think they would have rather stayed put? Mine swing between wanting to go and staying put.

 

Thanks again

 

A

 

 

They love being back in the UK, in their school and with their friends, but they miss their Dad.

They also like Australia as a place; they were just very unhappy at school. It was probably the school we chose though because they were very happy at school in Perth.

They all say they would be happy back in Australia too which is good!

 

I'm sure your childrens' feelings are very normal. It's scary to leave all that's familiar, but exciting to be having a new adventure too - same as for adults!

 

Have fun:yes:

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Guest spongebob

Hi Amanda.

 

After reading your post, I work in a senior school in the UK (hoping to emigrate tho) but I work as an exam invigilator and just thought it may help to know that all the exam systems appear to be changing to include a wider variety of types of exams from written papers to coursework to computer based exams. With this in mind lots of exams are becoming modular (take an exam every term or so? I think) but that the GCSE courses are now beginning in Year 9 with the first exams (Usually science) in the November of year 9 not year 10 as previously. The exams are now being taken over 3 years, not 2 as before.

I would advise going and having a chat at your local senior school to find out more as I am by no means an expert but this seems to be the way the schools are going in the area I live in so that the schools can incorporate diploma's etc.

Bit long winded so I apologize. I just didn't want you coming back in year 9 expecting to have a year before GCSE's and finding that in fact they were starting immediately. Hope this helps (prob adds more confusion) but will at least give you some questions to ask! :cute:

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Thank you spongebob. Forewarned and all that! Good luck with your plans too :)

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Guest

Hi, quick question for you guys, I have one child in high school and one going in August, here in Scotland, we class high school years as 1st, 2nd, 3rd year and so on, the school my children go to is brill, and if we get SS we are hoping to go next year once my son sits his exams (which is a year earlier at this particular school) which gives him a couple of years to go for his highers, but not sure about highers in AUS do they exist in OZ?? my daughter will obviously just be at the school for a year (if things go our way) so we are hoping that we are doing the right thing, but again hearing things about the oz education system is a little off putting. Any suggestions??

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