GCSE & A-Level Results - Wishing you the best of luck!
On the 20th of March, our lives came to an immediate halt as a result of this unprecedented situation; we were being given complicated information during such an uncertain time and we weren’t sure who to believe or who to listen to. As well as this, we had no idea who to turn to with our number of questions. Do we keep revising? Should we hand in our books? Will we get the grades we deserve? These questions and thoughts passed through the minds of many teenagers across the country, I’m sure.
As the COVID-19 restrictions begin to ease, our stress levels may not be doing the same. GCSE and A-Level Results Days are fast-approaching and at Newport Youth Council, we'd like to provide you with some helpful advice in advance of your big day.
Whether you get the results you expected or not, that's OK. Try to celebrate what you have achieved, whether that's academically or not - you've survived this extremely difficult time and you deserve to be proud of that.
Consider Your Options
Exam results aren't the end of the world - you can do so much more, even if you don't get the grades you hoped for. Never forget that education doesn't stop at school; you can be educated on an apprenticeship and continue learning or educated through remote learning - there's no right way to work through life, nor is there a right timescale; you deserve to have your academic life tailored to your individual needs. There are many people who are not 'exams' people, they may be practical people, and they may not gain the top grades through exams but will go far with those practical skills.
Contemplating University Clearing?
Some people who didn't get in to their first choice university went through Clearing and were often accepted to better universities than they originally planned. In some cases, even those who achieved their target grades went through Clearing because they decided they wanted to go to a different university than they had initially applied for.
Be prepared! Have a list of the universities you are going to call, their Clearing phone numbers, and note times the Clearing lines are actually open. All this information should be readily available on individual university websites. Do this research before the day, and make sure you truly would like to go to these universities. As soon as the lines open up, start calling - and do not be put off if you're rejected by the first few you try because perseverance is key!
Take it Slow
Moving onto the next step is a very personal thing, so giving yourself time to breathe could give you a whole new perspective. Try not to make decisions in the heat of the moment; take as much time as you need to work out your next steps, and ask for help if you need it.
Remember to De-Stresss
Despite reassurance from friends and family, sometimes the stress of the situation can get you down. To overcome the stress, it helps to make sure you stay connected to your passions and use each stressful situation as a learning experience. Having time to yourself and being able to just stop, slow down, gather and reflect is important in effectively dealing with stressful, overwhelming situations and maintaining your sense of self.
Avoid Comparing Yourself to Others
Some people are very academic while others are more creative, and some are a mix of both. Just remember, don’t compare yourself to anyone! Some of your friends may have achieved higher grades than you but, everyone has different strengths, weaknesses, goals and plans, and there is no right or wrong next step. It’s your choice and your life!
Remember that there are support services available and that there are thousands of other students in your position. Following the COVID-19 crisis, this is not easy. At Newport Youth Council, we wish you the very best of luck with retrieving your results this month.