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Supporting my child’s move to a new school

Moving to a new school can be a significant change for children, impacting their social and emotional well-being.

As a parent, you play a crucial role in helping your child navigate this transition smoothly.

Here are some strategies to support your child during this period of adjustment.

Understanding the Change

Transitioning to a new school, especially if it is from primary to secondary, often involves adapting to a larger and more diverse environment. Children may experience anxiety about making new friends, adjusting to different teaching styles, and fitting into a new school culture.

Recognising and validating these feelings is the first step in supporting your child through this transition.

Maintaining open lines of communication is essential. Encourage your child to express their feelings and concerns about the move. Listen actively and empathetically, providing reassurance and understanding. Let them know that it’s normal to feel apprehensive and that you are there to support them every step of the way.

Retaining Positivity

Help your child focus on the positives of their new school environment. Highlight opportunities for new friendships, different extracurricular activities, and the chance to learn from a diverse peer group.

Framing the move as an exciting new adventure can help mitigate some of the anxiety associated with the transition.

Children often take cues from their parents’ attitudes and behaviours. Model resilience and adaptability in your approach to the transition.

Show confidence in their ability to thrive in the new environment and maintain a positive, proactive attitude towards the changes.

Embracing the New Setting

Social integration is key to your child’s emotional well-being. Encourage your child to participate in school activities and join clubs or sports teams that interest them. These settings provide natural opportunities to meet new friends with shared interests.

Arrange playdates or social gatherings outside of school to help your child form bonds with their new classmates.

As a parent, get involved in the school community by attending parent-teacher meetings, school events, and volunteer opportunities.

Your active participation demonstrates your commitment to your child’s education and helps you stay informed about their new environment. It also allows you to connect with other parents and build a support network.

Seeking Professional Support

Supporting your child’s social and emotional well-being during the move from a private to a state school requires empathy, patience, and active involvement. By fostering open communication, encouraging new friendships, maintaining routines, and seeking additional support when needed, you can help your child navigate this transition successfully. Your support and encouragement will empower them to embrace their new school environment with confidence and resilience.