Y10 Mock Exam Letter
Dear parents and carers
This letter contains a detailed summary of the upcoming Year 10 mock exam period between Thursday 22nd June and Wednesday 5th July.
Students will have an exams assembly on Tuesday 20th June to ensure that the main points covered in this letter have been discussed with them. However, we would still recommend that you read this letter with your child to ensure you both have a clear understanding of what the mock exam window will entail.
We are so proud of the way in which so many of our Year 10 students have shown a significant step up in their application as this year has progressed – most students are showing us that they are ready to move into Year 11 and sit their GCSE exams. The Year 10 mock exams provide students with the first full opportunity to rise to the demands of KS4 assessments.
Mock exams are most impactful for students when they:
- Have full attendance, so that they can start to learn the rhythm of an exam period – an important thing for students to grow comfortable with (if students miss exams, we have time scheduled for them to catch up, but sitting the exam at the same time and in the same conditions as their peers is preferable)
- Revise diligently, otherwise mock exams will be a wasted opportunity to see what level a student can currently attain when performing at their best.
- Don’t judge success by only looking at marks gained – we are only in Year 10 and, while we want students to gain as many marks as possible, at this stage we would rather they judge success more holistically. Did students manage to do some revision at home to prepare for each exam? Did they stay calm in each exam and pick up as many marks as they could? Did they learn about what their next steps need to be in order to be better prepared when the next mock exam window arrives in November of Year 11?
With this in mind, please have a careful look at our plans for the Year 10 mock exam period, starting this week. If you are unsure of anything covered in this letter, please do reach out to [email protected] FAO Y10 team.
Expectations during mock exam period: Thursday 22 June – Wednesday 5 July
Uniform – normal JCA school uniform is expected during the mock exam period for every examination. Students must ensure they maintain high standards throughout.
Attendance and punctuality – morning exams begin promptly at 09:00 and afternoon exams start at 13:00. This means that students must arrive at school for 08:35 as usual so that they have time to get to their exam in a calm and ordered manner. To facilitate a 1pm afternoon start, Year 10 lunch has been moved to begin at 12:10 instead of 1:10. So from now until the end of the year, Year 10 lunch will take place from 12:10-12:40.
Attendance at mock exams is vital. If your child misses any mock exams due to illness, we will request a doctor’s note to confirm that they were unable to be in school. We will use the school minibus to drive and collect students where they are able to be in school.
Lessons during the exam period – lessons continue as normal during the exam period.
Equipment – it is imperative that students are prepared for their examinations. They are expected to have a clear pencil case with equipment needed – including basics such as black pens, pencils, rubber, highlighters, rulers, a compass and protractor as well as a scientific calculator. By coming to their mock exams fully prepared, they take the first step in empowering themselves to be successful.
Breaches of exam rules – students will be reminded before every mock exam, but it is vital that you are also aware: any breach of exam guidelines next year (for example, having a phone in their pocket during an exam, even if unused) is likely to result in a score of 0 (and therefore a U grade) for the exam in question, and could have consequences for every single one of their GCSEs depending on the severity of the breach. It is important you discuss this with your child – by being more prepared in advance they will be able to focus on their exam performance each day. We will treat breaches during mock exams seriously to help students practise for their actual exams next year.
Eid – Eid will take place on Wednesday 28th June and we have ensured that there are no exams scheduled for the afternoon on that day. However, we are working in a very tight timeframe and were unable to remove exams from the day altogether – some students will have mocks exams in the morning. We have therefore attempted to find the following compromise: students should come into school and sit their mock exams in the morning but can then sign out and leave the site if we have already received permission from home for them to do so. Please contact [email protected] if your child will need to leave school for Eid after their morning exams on Wednesday 28th June (note: Eid is the only reason that we will accept for a child leaving school early on that date).
Trips – there are Y10 Geography trips taking place during the mock exam period, but they have been scheduled in such a way that no child on the trips will miss any of their mock exams.
Revision support – teachers will be speaking regularly with students about what revision they should be doing to best prepare for their upcoming mock exams. If your child is ever in the position where they say they are unsure of what to revise for a subject, please email [email protected] immediately FAO the subject teacher – this should not be a position that students are in.
The school website has a revision section for KS4 students (here) that students have access to as well as paper resources from lessons, their exercise books and folders with revision work and online resources such as Seneca, BBC Bite Size and Dr Frost for Maths.
Please support your child by ensuring they have a quiet place to revise and that they avoid any distractions during their revision time like television, mobiles, and other electronic devices. 1 hour of quality revision will beat 4 hours without focus. We would always recommend revision in 30-minute chunks: 25 minutes working, 5 minutes resting, repeat.
Mock Exam Routines
Morning exams will be starting at 9:00 promptly and students will need to be in the correct space by 8:40 to ensure we are not delayed in any way.
Afternoon exams will be starting at 13:00 promptly and students will be directed to their space from 12:40, straight after lunch.
Any students arriving late to an exam will be held and will enter with any other students who have missed the start as a small group to minimise disruption to those who have already started their exam.
Students will be lining up on the Astro court by the sports hall and will enter the hall in rows according to the seating plan of each exam. They must ensure they have turned off their mobile phone, removed watches and headphones and placed them in their bags prior to entering the exam space (as mentioned previously, consequences are significant if they do not abide by this). Once they enter the exam space, they must remain silent and must not leave their seat without permission.
If students take their exam in a separate venue they will assemble in the outdoor space between A and B wing. They must ensure they have turned off their mobile phone, removed watches and headphones and placed them in their bags prior to entering the exam space. Once they enter the exam space, they must remain silent and must not leave their seat without permission.
Students in both exam venues will hear exactly the same message before the start of the exams to ensure equity.
Water, breakfast and snacks
Students should bring a refillable water bottle to school – this must be clear and have no labels. They cannot eat in the exam space but should ensure they have had a good breakfast and snacks, if needed, for maintaining energy levels across the day. Students should avoid energy drinks containing high levels of sugar and caffeine as these are likely to have a detrimental effect on a student’s ability to perform in an exam.
It is important that students do not work for hours into the night, cramming for an exam the following day. They should build an effective bedtime routine so that they are able to get the appropriate amount of sleep required to be able to maintain energy levels across the whole mock exam period.
If your child is significantly unwell during the mock exam period, you must contact us immediately. We will reschedule their missed exams so, if at all possible, they should be in school sitting their exams first time around.
Full Timetable of Exams
Below is a table containing every exam taking place between Thursday 22nd June and Wednesday 5th July.
Below the table are various points of explanation that will help your understanding:
Your child will not be involved in all of these exams. Please check carefully with them which exams they are involved in by using their personalised exam timetable that they have been given during tutor time.
Contact [email protected] FAO their tutor if they have lost their timetable.
With the recent announcement of further NEU trade union action for 5th & 7th July, we are still considering if the mock exams planned for 5th July are able to go ahead. We will update you as soon as we are able.
We look forward to seeing how your child performs in their mock exams.
The Year 10 Team
Steve Church, Janet Allen, Simon Horn, Dom Williams