Results aren’t always as good as expected, so supporting your teen with emotional and practical support can really help them with the next steps in their academic career.
Follow these five essential tips for supporting your child through those difficult days once the results are in.
Discuss their options
Once the results are in, stay open minded as to what your child might want to do next.
Returning to study full time is the most popular choice with students continuing to study for their A-levels or continue work and job-related courses like National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs), BTECs, TechBacs and Cambridge Technicals.
That’s not the only option for students though – they could train whilst they learn by doing an apprenticeship, traineeship or supported internship, or if they’d like to do some work in the third sector they could consider doing some volunteering while studying part-time.
With emotions running high, your child will need some level-headed practical support, and if they’re disappointed by their results make progress on how to better the situation – for example, find out when and where the resits will take place.
Although it’s generally just maths and English subjects which are available for resits, an opportunity to resit will give your child the opportunity to improve their study skills and also give you the time to support them with additional tutoring if needs be.
Making a few small practical changes will help to build your child’s confidence and improve their future grades.
Keep calm and stay positive
It’s natural to feel disappointed about less than inspiring exam results, but whatever their results, ease off on the pressure.
Your role during exam season is to provide support, reassurance and love. The situation can be entirely overwhelming for children, so remember it’s your job to offer a sense of perspective without dismissing their very genuine and real concerns.
It’s an important step to learning about failure too. Use examples of your own experiences of failure and discuss what you learned and how you went on to change the situation.
If they’re less interested about you and more in their favourite pop stars, find out how their icon developed from setbacks and went on to succeed.
Take any failures as inspiration for what to do next – and they’ll be confident they too can make a success of their life.
After all, Richard Branson and Sir Alan Sugar both left school without any qualifications, and they’ve not done too badly for themselves!
Encourage them to speak to a professional
Whether your child has just received their GCSEs or A Levels, the Exam Results Helpline (EHR) is on hand to offer free, independent advice.
The Exam Results Helpline (ERH) will help your child make decisions about university, sixth form college or other educational choices; skills, qualifications and subject choices; resits and remarks; gap years; vocational learning routes; careers and employment; clearing; and funding options. Students can call once their respective results are in. Speaking to an advisor is free and lines are open throughout the day – simply call the ERH on 0808 100 8000.