Students spend the majority of their time at school for over a decade. Thus, it’s crucial to ensure that their school is a perfect match for them. You can pick the most popular school in the city with world-class facilities, yet it may not provide a fulfilling educational experience. Students act and behave differently when their needs aren’t being met. They are easily irritable and aggressive, or more shy and sad than usual. Random mood swings and a strong aversion to school indicate a need for a serious evaluation. Here’s a guide to identifying and addressing the signs that convey when you should move schools.
Reasons To Change Your Child’s School
- Unfulfilled Academic Needs
If your child’s needs vary from other school students and are left unattended, it’s time to switch. Each student has different learning styles and abilities, or they might suffer from a learning disability. If the school fails to address and adapt the teaching methods to assist your child, their performance can dwindle. If they keep lagging behind other students and are unable to score good grades, it’s time to consider moving schools.
- Lack of Intellectual Stimulation
Are you constantly hearing your child complain about being bored or losing interest in the classroom? The problem might lie in the school and not the student. Some children are gifted or are just meticulous in their studies. They learn faster and complete their work and assignments before their peers. They become distracted and disinterested when the current school stops challenging their intelligence. It’s better to have your child’s capabilities assessed and find a school that can keep them on their toes.
- Social Needs
Students need plenty of healthy social stimulation to grow into happy, functioning adults. Since the school days take up most of their time, the opportunity to socialise is mainly limited to the classroom or school clubs. If your child is unable to find friends or connect with the school community, it’s time to think ‘should I move schools’. Especially, if they feel alone or left out despite multiple attempts at socialising.
- Bullying and Cyber Crimes
While feeling lonely is awful for children, getting bullied in any form is devastating. It hinders their physical, academic, and emotional growth. It can cause serious trauma to students, which can heighten their anxiety and lower their self-esteem. The school culture and policies determine their actions on such matters. If the school teachers and staff fail to address the issue of bullying, you should begin your search for a school with better policies.
- Unresolved Conflicts
Sometimes students show signs of conflict with blatant refusal to go to school. They start making fake excuses, feign sickness and constantly try to skip school. It’s a sign of an internal or external conflict. They could be having issues with their peers, teacher or school administration. It’s important to discuss the reason behind this behaviour and shift schools if it makes them uncomfortable.
- Family Issues
Oftentimes, the problem doesn’t lie in the school or your child’s behaviour. If you are unable to sustain your child’s schooling due to financial reasons, it’s okay to switch schools. For instance, for a cheaper alternative, you can transfer them from a private school to a public school in your locality. If your family is planning to move states or shift to another location in the same town, it’s better to move schools for easier access. Any unprecedented change can force your child to change schools, however, it’s your job to make the transition as smooth as possible.
Benefits of Changing Schools
- With some effort, you can find a school that provides a customised learning experience for your child. Students can get access to premier education & resources befitting their needs. This will enhance their academic performance and career prospects.
- Enrolling your child in a school with strict anti-bullying policies can save them from lifelong trauma. It can protect their physical as well as mental well-being.
- Students with learning disabilities need special education services. The right place can provide the much-needed resources that can help them gain invaluable school experience.
- Once the student can find like-minded peers at a new school, they can become more socially affable and active. It can help them network and connect with others in future.
- Some schools offer resources for a plethora of extracurricular activities. They also have multiple school clubs where students can gain practical skills and engage socially.
- If your child feels safer and happier, it positively transforms your family life as well. A lack of stressors can improve everyone’s productivity and performance.
- With apt resources, teacher’s guidance, and a safe & friendly school environment, students get a chance to flourish. They can solely focus on studying and improving academically.
Things To Consider When Switching Schools
- This is one of the most consequential decisions in a student’s life. Thus, their consent holds utmost importance. Make sure your child fully understands, accepts, and supports the decision before making the switch.
- Familiarise yourself with the administrative staff, teachers, curriculum, teaching methods, extracurricular activities, rules and regulations of the new school. This will help you gain better insights and make an informed decision.
- Start planning way ahead of time. Make lists of all the available options and discuss them with your child. Make sure you impartially assess the advantages and disadvantages of each school before selecting one.
- In case you can’t figure out how to move schools, seek guidance from a career coach or a previous school counsellor. Visit the prospective schools to get a better understanding of their vision, values and procedures.
- It’s crucial to look through the practical aspects of school transfers. Consider the educational, financial and emotional consequences of the decision. Make sure the new school is easily accessible to your child.
- Students’ age and class play a significant role in determining the transfer. For instance, if they are in year 10, it hardly makes any sense to change schools in the final years. Instead, it can hurt their performance in the ATAR. Such changes are easier to manage in elementary school or middle school.
- Consider making the change at the beginning of the school year. It will give your child ample time to adjust to a new environment and focus keenly on studying.
- Be attentive to the student’s mood & behaviour during and after making the change. Encourage them to socialise early on. Make sure they are adjusting well and showing no symptoms of discomfort or discontentment.
With about 9,581 schools in Australia, the list of private and public education alternatives is endless. Thus, it makes no sense to keep your child in a place where their educational needs aren’t being met. It’s important to identify their issues and make the shift at an opportune time. Explore all the available options, seek help from professionals, and enrol your child at a school that can provide him or her with a wholesome learning experience.