Three ways to support the transition from primary to secondary

changing for | Three ways to support the transition from primary to secondary
By Anthony Wolny | 10th July 2023 | 4 min read

For all students, September brings an exciting opportunity to progress to the next stage in their education.

But for some, the change is enormous as they transition from primary school to secondary school – new environment, new teachers, new peers and a whole new level of stress.

The transition is a massive adjustment for children, but with the right support, you can help students look forward to September rather than fear it.

Not sure where to start? Here are our top tips for supporting students in the next stage of their education.

1) Turn apprehension into excitement

A key thing to remember when offering support: it’s all about attitude.

New students have been pulled away from just about everything familiar to them – friends, routine, environment, teachers and even rules.

If students join thinking the change will be awful, it probably will be.

To tackle an apprehensive attitude, try turn their attention to the exciting aspects of the change, such as making new friends, experiencing a much bigger learning environment and taking advantage of opportunities that they have never had before.

With patience, empathy and honest communication, a positive attitude can work wonders.

2) Give students the chance to open up  

Compared to adulthood, childhood can look like a carefree time, but that doesn’t mean students don’t experience stress and anxiety.

More so, students are more likely to deal with it in unhealthy ways, bottling up their worries and concerns.

Encourage students to talk about the upcoming transition.

While shy students are unlikely to speak up, it will surely be a relief to hear other classmates are feeling a similar way.

If you have concerns regarding specific students, don’t be afraid to hold 1-to-1 sessions, as they may want to talk but aren’t quite sure how to reach out.

3) Extend support to parents

Parents and guardians will also be feeling the pressure as the first day of secondary approaches.

Naturally, your focus is on students, but don’t forget to also engage parents and guardians, offering guidance on how they can help their child at home, especially if they’re having a tougher time than others.

They must know they can come to you with any concerns about their children or the process as a whole, so informative, reassuring and regular communications are vital.

It’s all about providing the tools and information parents need now to support children in the future.

Don’t give up on harder-to-reach parents either – support should be available to all, and they need to know you’re on hand.

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New school year, new exciting opportunities

A new school year gives students the chance to progress with their education and develop as individuals.

As September quickly approaches, the current year six cohort is going to be feeling the pressure, but with the right support and a bit of patience, they’ll quickly learn it’s nothing to fear.

Learn more about the IRIS Parental Engagement Suite and how it can help

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