Congratulations all round? 

By  Lysette Offley

Congratulations all round - photo of school girlsMany congratulations to the 352,590 students who discovered this week that they’ve got the ‘A’ Level exam grades they need to go to their first choice universities.

“Alex got into his first choice university today – so thank you.”

There have been several proud parents who’ve thanked me for helping their child learn to revise efficiently and it’s very rewarding, especially knowing that they’ve got those skills for life. After all, not everyone needs to or wants to pass exams, but simply having the necessary skills to learn and retain information gives them the option.

But what if your child didn’t get the grades they needed, and you’re afraid they’ve already ruined their chances of a happy and successful life?

I appreciate you’re probably disappointed and upset. You might even believe that your child didn’t try hard enough, so you might be frustrated and even a little angry… but let’s get it into perspective.

No one died! And there are many ways to skin a cat (horrible expression – I must stop using it!)

In this day and age, there are a multitude of routes forward. So get creative and listen to your child. What do they really want to do with their future? Do they know? Or are they reflecting your values?

We all have our own model of the world: how it works, who we are and how we fit into it. It’s only natural that we advise our children from our own impressions of what’s important and what’s possible.

But the world has changed since we were kids!

A lot!

So maybe what we thought we knew isn’t the only way after all.


Reported by the Telegraph this week:

“The proportion of students passing their A-levels has dropped for the first time in three decades following a clampdown on exam re-sits and a shift towards tougher subjects.”

Three decades? Actually, more precisely, 32 years – the year that Nige and I took our ‘A’ Levels. And each year, until this, as grades have increased, so have the criticisms that standards are dropping.

But that’s not our kids’ fault. All they can do is their best – under whatever circumstances are thrown at them. I expect they’re sick and tired of being told by us wrinklies that, “We had it tough in our day!”


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Lysette Offley

Genius Maker & Founder of Genius Material and The Genius Principles. Working with professionals who need exceptional academic & professional development.

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