Here are some top tips on dealing with disappointing results:
- Don’t be afraid to talk about the results, either before or after.
- Don’t shy away from the disappointment your child is feeling. Encourage him or her to talk about it.
- Keep talking about the many possible future paths available.
- Emphasise how hard they’ve tried and the work they’ve put in – and why this shows they have qualities that can take them far.
- Explain – preferably with real examples – that many successful people have taken “a zig-zag route” to reach their goals.
- If you’re worried, don’t wait till the last minute. Ring up and ask for an appointment with your tutor or careers adviser to look at options in case you drop a grade, so you have a real plan B. Find out too if there’s someone you can talk to at school or college in the days and weeks after results.
- Be aware of the hype around A-levels day – TV images of ecstatic students, for example – which can inflate the importance of the results beyond the reality.
- Develop a broader perspective on your future – talk to your friends, your family and especially your teachers or tutors, who may be well placed to help you think about alternative but equally rewarding ways forward.
- Plan to do something positive on results day, whatever your grades. And stay in touch with people, to remind yourself that there is more to life than A-levels.