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Surviving GCSE Results Day: The Parents Guide

Tuesday, August 22 2017

There are very few ways to enjoy the build up to GCSE results day as a parent. 

All you can do is keep in mind that ultimately the day is about your kids – it is their success – and you need to trust that everyone gets what they deserve.

Because, of course, that always happens …

Regardless, if this is your first time experiencing results day as a parent, or if you’re a veteran in managing results day stress and looking for some better survival techniques, we hope the following will help.

Kids need fuel 

The last thing anyone needs is your child feeling unwell on results day. The best way to stop that from happening is for them to get plenty of sleep the night before and to eat a good quality breakfast before they head off to pick up their results in the morning. 

Don’t play the blame game

Whatever happens when the envelope is opened, don’t make any hasty assumptions about your child’s effort, input or desire to succeed.

Some of the most important advice out there is, “do not be tempted to point any fingers”. Don’t pass any blame to the school, exam boards, the Department for Education or your child’s social group.

They are a young adult now and responsible for their own success.

Don’t get angry – no one likes it when you’re angry

If something comes as a huge surprise, focus on what’s next for them. GCSE results day can be a highly stressful environment so try to remain calm and supportive to them.

Remember, even parents don’t know everything about careers and options so make use of all the advice out there. Local organisations are on hand to support you and your child as well.

Remember, it’s not really about you

Ultimately, this is your child’s day.

When the doors swing open to let them in to collect and open envelopes, you’re there to support them in their success or failures.

Some of those who hovered at borderlines will make it, some won’t. All those who slogged their guts out will get results they can be rightly proud of.

Even the toughest teenager will beam with joy when opening an envelope stuffed with success.

Ensure you have make-up wipes and tissues for if and when a tearful moment arises. Remember to celebrate and reiterate your child’s strengths and leave the analysis and debrief for another day.