5 tips for parents whose children are receiving their Junior Certificate results
Students throughout the country, who have taken the Junior Certificate exams earlier this summer, will receive their first ever state exam results. This can be a stressful time for a young person particularly if they receive results that they or their parents perceive as disappointing. How can we make this a less traumatic time for young people?
1. Keep Perspective
Perspective is essential. Without it, success can breed complacency and failure can discourage attempting in the future. Emphasising that the Junior Certificate is just a step in the cycle, while celebrating the fact it is completed, is important for a parent whose child is receiving results. If they have done well, then excellent, but if they haven't it isn't the end of the world either. Now is a time for celebration and pride, no matter what the results are.
2. Deal with emotions sensitively
It can be easy for adults to brush off the emotions of young people and forget just how important this is to students. If your son or daughter is distraught, or elated, after receiving results, try to understand how they feel from their perspective and open the door of communication. If they are upset, ensure they know that these results mean little in the pursuit of their overall life ambition. If they are elated, let them know you are happy that their hard work has paid off. Either way, let them know you are proud.
3. Build positive emotional coping skills
If your son, or daughter, can't resolve the strong emotions associated with these results, don't hesitate to seek professional help. This is the first time they will receive any meaningful academic results, so it is important that they build positive emotional coping skills going forward. They will need these skills as they progress to doing other exams in the future.
4. Enjoy the time
If a student is disappointed with their results, reassure them that they deserve to celebrate because they have completed the exams and completed the junior school cycle and that this is an achievement to be proud of in itself. It is important to cherish these times and not to allow them to be dominated by results that will be soon forgotten.
5. Be aware of the pressures to party
The parties held after the Junior Certificate results are released are to be enjoyed, not regretted. This a time when many younger people can face pressure to take alcohol and substances. It is essential that you discuss this with your child and highlight the potential dangers. Alcohol in particular can be easily available at these parties, so be vigilant and take note of where your son or daughter may be going to celebrate. Support them not to give in to the peer pressure to drink.
6. Consider Others
Of course, your student may have achieved the results they were hoping for. However, not every student will have and some will be disappointed. Encourage your child to be sensitive if they are discussing results with their peers and be sensitive yourself when talking to friends and other parents