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With just one day to go until GCSE Results day, it's an anxious time for teenagers waiting to hear how they've got on.  It's a tense time for parents and carers too. I should know - this year I have the 'double whammy' of twins getting their results! 

I've asked our experienced careers advisers to come up with their five top tips to help parents through this stressful time:

1. Know your child’s options

16 year olds are now required to stay in education or training until they turn 18.  Your child’s options include:

  • continuing into their school’s 6th form
  • going to a different school’s 6th form
  • studying full time at college
  • finding an apprenticeship/traineeship

Find out more about these options from your local schools and colleges, www.apprenticeships.gov.uk and www.adviza.org.uk/youngperson

2. Be prepared

If they haven’t already, encourage your child to have a plan B in case their results aren’t as hoped. Stress that this doesn’t mean you think they’ve done badly – it’s just good to be prepared.  They may want also want to reconsider their options if their results are better than expected.  Find out where your child can get information and help should they need it, such as websites of colleges, training providers, other 6th forms, so they can find out what’s on offer.  Click here to find out what support Adviza provides in your local area or ring us on: 0845 408 5002.

3. Get ready

Make sure your child knows the arrangements for collecting their results on the day.  If possible, plan to go with them (even if they make you stay in the car) so that you’ll be there to talk to school staff and your school’s careers adviser if needed.  It’s a good idea to be available on the days following too in case you need to attend meetings at school or to take your child to interviews at local colleges/employers. 

4. Stay calm

If the results are disappointing your child is likely to be upset and panicky.  Try to stay calm and reassure them that there are always other options they can explore.  Encourage your child not to make a knee jerk reaction but to look at all the options open to them and make an informed decision that is right for them.

5. Take action

If your child doesn’t get the grades they hoped for it’s important to seek advice straightaway.  Urge your child to speak to the school, college or employer they were hoping to move on to as soon as they can. All schools and colleges will be open on Results days and the following days/weeks. Make sure your child has their results and any other useful documentation (i.e. ID, references, records of achievement, portfolios etc) to hand.  If your child is struggling to make a decision you could consider getting further help. Adviza has a range of services on offer including guidance interviews, workshops and assessments for young people, and advice sessions for parents. Click here to find out more.

We hope you find these tips helpful.  Good luck!

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