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Has anyone been given 25% extra time for exams (GCSEs or A levels)?

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by diabeticfairy, Jan 29, 2019.

  1. diabeticfairy

    diabeticfairy · Newbie

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    Hello.

    I am interested in hearing about people who have had 25% extra time agreed for public exams (which is usually based on normal school test and exam arrangements for that person) in the last 5 years.

    There appears to be pretty inconsistent adjustments being made for diabetic children for both internal and public school exams. While sitting in separate rooms to take exams and “stopping the clock” to treat hypos seem to be generally accepted there is a huge difference in treatment in terms of extra time being given for Type 1's taking exams. My 13 year old son is a couple of years away from GCSEs but experience to date has shown that he has been badly affected by hypos or hypers during exams. At the last set of school exams he did amazingly well in some subjects and in other subjects when he was hyper his spelling totally went to the point where the relevant teacher said he has no idea what happened (I do, he was 22 MMOL for over an hour) and in others he had 2 hypos during a 90 minute exam and as soon as he was in range was asked to continue the exam - of course with dire results. Of course immediately taking exams following a hypo or hyper doesn’t taking into account the cognitive effect this has on performance for several hours later which is why I believe that 25% extra time which seem to be given out for lots of other conditions is something that Type 1's should be able to avail themselves of. It appears that some students are given this but many are not.

    I would be really interested to hear from anybody that has had the 25% extra time applied to them. It is something that the school need to apply for on the student's behalf but some students seem to be getting this fairly easily while others are given a blatant "no" from the school. I would be very interested to hear how students have achieved this and what supporting evidence, including assessments, were helpful. Thanks very much.
     
    #1 diabeticfairy, Jan 29, 2019 at 8:21 PM
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2019
  2. kitedoc

    kitedoc Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Never done in my day (diabetic at schools 1966 - 71 and University 1972 to 1978.
    And that was without glucose meters and on basic insulins.
     
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  3. Deleted Account

    Deleted Account · Guest

    Have you checked with Diabetes UK?
    They seem to work closely with schools and will advise you what schools are obliged to offer to children with diabetes during exams.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  4. Rokaab

    Rokaab Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Not for me either - though I was a little later (1979-1993 for school and 1993-1996 for uni) - didn't have blood glucose meters til i was about 10 I think and even after then said meter never went to school with me, and I did end up having to persuade the uni that I should be able to take an exam at uni late as I missed it completely as I was hypoing when I should've been waking up to go to it - they assumed I'd been out drinking and not sure they really believed it was a medical thing but they let me take it late anyway.
     
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  5. diabeticfairy

    diabeticfairy · Newbie

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    There is no "set" way to deal with this - individual schools have different procedures though you are right there is general guidance on the minimum that should be given - but you still hear of lots of accounts of students being asked to leave the room to test etc (absolutely not acceptable under "reasonable adjustmnets") and other non-starters. When it comes to extra time due to impact on cognitive function of hypos and hypers what is offered varies enourmously.
     
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  6. diabeticfairy

    diabeticfairy · Newbie

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    Things have changed a lot. Reasonable adjustments needed for disabilities and certain conditions. Statemented learning difficulties have an easier process with this and generally there is better understanding of the impact of certain disabilities and conditions on cognitive performance but this is not universally accepted. Some schools realise that poor control can lead to very slow processing (both hypos and hypers) that take hours to correct properly after an episode, others seem to have no appreciation for this (attitude of pop some sugar, get back up to 4/5MMOL and off you go).
     
  7. diabeticfairy

    diabeticfairy · Newbie

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    Luckily things have improved since then - many universities are very progressive with this and many type 1 students have extra time and or other types of special consideration for learning and exams.
     
  8. kitedoc

    kitedoc Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Yes, education has improved in many areas "since I were a lad" !! I am always fascinated when some educational authorities seem to lack commonsense or believe in the 'stiff upper lip' attitude or think that all kids with these letters are just putting it on !!
     
  9. annliggins

    annliggins Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi , i am an exam invigillator of 4 years and T1. A student would need to have extra time and/ or care applied for by the exam officer of the school. Adjustments would be made ie extra time for hypo, testing etc and of course the stress could raise bg so quiet room should be available . It is difficult to manage in an exam enviroment , trust me from my side of things being in a hall with 200 kids and i need to check or eat so yes .. just talk to the school exam officer no worries.
     
    • Informative Informative x 2
  10. annliggins

    annliggins Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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  11. annliggins

    annliggins Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Sorry please see my post im new to this
     
  12. Little_Lucy

    Little_Lucy Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi,
    I am currently taking my GCSE’s and i tend to get pretty bad hypos too as well as highs during exam time. I have ‘stopping the clock’ which is very useful as if I ever need to test my blood sugar I can stop when ever I like for however long I need. I do feel however that the exam invigilators may not understand my actual need to stop for 20 minutes however I think it would end up fine. I think this is better than having extra time because when I am low I cannot concentrate on anything and exam extra time may only be an extra 10 minutes which is less than what I’d need. I think if you are to ask the school I would have a doctor note just in case, I myself didn’t need one but you never know. I also take my exams in a separate room which I do feel is necessary in not bothering any one else if I do need to test and honestly it is a benefit as the smaller rooms tend to be less stressful and less intermediating, so if I were you I’d ask about that too.
    Hope this helps
     
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  13. BeccyB

    BeccyB Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    So glad this kind of thing is getting some attention these days. In 1995 I just about passed my maths A-level mock after having a massive hypo in the exam and the teacher not giving a ****! Fortunately I was ok in the real thing and got the B I needed to get into uni.
     
  14. Abigail18

    Abigail18 · Member

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    Hi,
    In school I was given extra time if I had a hypo/hyper so if an exam was 1hr 30 if I didn’t have any problems I would have the same time as everyone else but if I did then I would get the extra time added to the end. Currently doing my degree in the exams if I had to treat a hypo/hyper I was allowed to take up to 45minutes break as that was instructed by my DSN and that time would be added to the end. Maybe it is worth getting your sons DSN to give you information and if needed get them to write a letter saying about extra time
     
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  15. t1d08

    t1d08 Type 1 · Member

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    I didn’t even know you can ask for an extension of time.

    Type 1 diabetic for a little over 11 years went through high school and university (2009-2015) exams without having to deal with it. I guess perhaps once he gets use to completely understanding his body he’ll almost automatically know what’s wrong and what he needs. I would add that being nervous definitely can take a toll on his blood sugar.
     
  16. ringi

    ringi Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    That way there should be at least one dedicated invigilator for each student that is expected to have medical problems in an exam. When I worked for a college for the disabled for some O levels we needed as many as 40 invigilator, and we only had 80 students at the college.

    If need be all school in a town should be closed for students not taking exams to free up enough staff for invigilation.
     
  17. JMK1954

    JMK1954 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I have worked as an invigilator during several exam 'seasons'. Many schools take on temporary staff to provide cover for exams. I don't think there is any possibility of closing every school for exams to take place ! I went through 'O' and 'A' levels, a university degree and a teaching qualification without ever needing help in an exam, but I have escorted girls with a diagnosed kidney infection to the loo, passed tissues to kids who were sniffing uncontollably and were pathetically grateful and been left in charge of a room of 150 kids with one other person when a child was genuinely taken ill and an ambulance had to be called. You do not need to have any pre-existing medical condition to need the assistance of a staff member in an exam. Nor does someone always need a staff member in a standard-type school if they do have a medical condition.
    The important thing is that the school and exam board are told well in advance what the particular problems of a student may be. If this is spelled out clearly, arrangements can be made in advance. I started off as a teacher and this has always been the most important thing for those taking exams in my experience.
     
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  18. annliggins

    annliggins Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Sorry , not feesable in a mainstream school , it cannot be closed ! . Mental and /or physical problems are taken into consideraton for the exams and allowances made ...in my experience plenty of allowance.
     
  19. Redshank

    Redshank Prediabetes · Well-Known Member

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    There is an organisation called The Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) whis is responsible for setting rules for such matters as additional time.
    In my next post I will give you a link to the the document
    "Access Arrangements and Reasonable Adjustments"
    that schools should use when making these decisions. (I think I cannot post links until I have made 3 posts!)
    Applications can only be made by schools, not by parents, and a key person in this process is the Special Educational Needs Coordinator (Senco).
    The document outlines conditions for Additional Time, and for "Stopping the clock", (both of which must be looked at before the exam season) and Special Considerations which come into play if there is an unexpected incident during exams
     
  20. Redshank

    Redshank Prediabetes · Well-Known Member

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    Hopefully I can now post a link NO I CAN NOT so I think you will have to google

    I am trying to direct you to
    jcq.org
    access-arrangements-and-reasonable-adjustments-booklet

    (I have tried putting both of those into google and it found the booklet I am referring to)

    All secondary schools should have this document
    In the document early on there is a statement outlining what the Senco must do
    Section B looks at the area we are interested in.

    Page 21 has details of "supervised rest breaks" - these can be much more useful, and are more flexible than additional time.
    Section 5.1.2 says "There is no maximum time set for supervised rest breaks. The decision must be made by the SENCo based on their knowledge of the candidate’s needs and the candidate’s normal way of working when placed under timed conditions."

    The Senco would need evidence to show why the candidate might need these breaks, so any evidence you can provide would be helpful.
    Section 5.2 Discusses Additional Time. Although this sounds more appealing, it may not be as useful in the circumstances you describe as there is much less flexibility. Again the Senco would need to provide evidence of why it was needed

    The third thing to think about is
    "Special Consideration
    Special Consideration is a post examination adjustment to a candidate's mark or grade to reflect temporary injury, illness or other indisposition at the time of the examination/assessment."

    The Senco is key in any of the decisions made. I would recommend that you arrange to met the Senco and talk through why you think some of these things are required by your child, and talk about what evidence is required to support the Senco in applying for these.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
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