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Insights about UWC's University Placement Counselling

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Maggie2014
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Insights about UWC's University Placement Counselling

Postby Maggie2014 » Tue, 26 Aug 2014 4:46 am

Dear Parents who have children in UWC or who have children who are currently in Year 11 or 12 in any other International Schools,

i have a daughter currently doing Year 12 in UWCSEA. She is academically sound though not fantastically brilliant - we expect her to score between40-43. (that's how she finished her year 11). Her ECA is adequate and ordinary.

She is currently having to make choices about university placement. I don't know what other kids are like but my daughter seems undecided about her career direction which makes application difficult and she is also very demoralised by her counsellors. She has this to say about the counsellors in her school.

1. They talked down to her and made her feel dumb, small and insignificant
2. While the ethos of the school is to strive for your dreams, in reality, she felt that all her peers were forced to make conservative choices which will increase the school's first choice acceptance stats.

As a result, she is somewhat depressed, and for the first time, we see that she is unhappy with herself. We are concerned as we are talking about a teen who never had issues with academic confidence and this is a good the time to have a confidence crisis.

She has now been in the school for 4 years and has been adapting well academically and socially. We have nothing but praise for the school's pastoral care system up till now. Hence, it comes as a big surprise/shock to us that she would be so negative about the process. As my daughter is normally a level headed and sensible person, we are reluctant to discount her perception totally and would like to ask experienced parents in the forum the following questions:

1. Is her perception valid? If so, what should we do as parents?
2. why are the predicted grades such a secret? wouldn't it be better for the students to know exactly where they stand?
3. How do we find out about placement statitistics for each school?
4. How do most schools handle kids who are not clear about career paths?
5. My daughter does not want us to take this up with the school counsellors but would it be advisable for us to do so.

Not everyone has a passion to be a doctor or a lawyer and not everyone knows whether they want to do science or arts and this becomes increasingly difficult when you can straddle both spheres well. As a parent, I have some sympathy for that as I didn't know what I wanted to do at 18 but I understand that the world is changing and there is less tolerance for ambivalence.

We realise that it is important to be realistic, strategic and prudent but it is a concern when this comes at the expense of demoralising our kids. We would like to hear from parents out there (privately or in this forum) who have experience with this process of University application.

It definitely was simpler during our times.

thank you.
Maggie2014

SineadCollins
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Postby SineadCollins » Tue, 26 Aug 2014 8:36 pm

Hi there,

I'm Sinéad from the Communications department at UWCSEA and your message popped up in my inbox this morning (I subscribe to various alerts and sometimes they tell me when UWCSEA is mentioned online). I hope you don't mind my writing to you directly, but I was very sorry to read about your daughter's experience and raised it with both Frazer Cairns and James Dalziel today (I was not sure which campus you were on so spoke to the Heads of each). They were very concerned and wanted to respond directly to you. My email address is sinead.collins@uwcsea.edu.sg. Would you like to send me your email so we can reach out and deal with your concerns directly? This is a really important time for your daughter and we want to make sure she (and you) are properly supported.

I know from your message you were debating about whether or not to raise this with the school, so hope I have not put you in an awkward position by writing to you this way! I just felt I couldn't ignore your very understandable concern.

I look forward to hearing from you.
Sinéad

PNGMK
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Postby PNGMK » Wed, 27 Aug 2014 11:00 am

RANT: Some International Schools love to boast about their high scoring kids and what Unis they got into but they hide the others. There was an excellent article in the guardian about this recently in relations to private schools in the UK.

IMO I would go on a trip and explore the possible Unis in the city she may wish to study in. For example I've done this with my son in Perth at UWA/Curtin etc and he can at least envisage where he might end up studying. That may encourage her to think of it as part of her future. Also don't be afraid to let her take a break between HS and Uni to find her feet and place.

Edit: Also remind her that you are allowed to change your major mid stream and it's not the end of the world!

Link:

http://www.theguardian.com/teacher-netw ... ?CMP=fb_gu

(Note - I am not saying UWC is likes this- just showing how much things can be covered up for the sake of profit).


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