Why the Primary to Secondary Transition matters

19 Nov 2018

Why the Primary to Secondary Transition matters

19 Nov 2018

Adam Pate, Whole School Transition Coordinator, comments on how to cope with changes and how BISU supports students to make successful transitions

When students change class within or between schools, they must adopt to new surroundings, become familiar with new teachers and peers, learn new ways of working, and make sense of the rules and routines that operate in their classes. The transition to secondary school often happens simultaneously with important social, emotional and physiological changes in the lives of adolescents as they move from childhood to adulthood.

Students need to make positive adjustments to their new classes so that their wellbeing is not damaged and their learning is successful.

Researches show a strong correlation between the extent to which students experienced difficulty following transition and their likelihood of dropping out from education. Other research indicates that poor transitions impact on students’ wellbeing and on their achievement in the future. Where students experience multiple transitions because of transience, there are identifiable negative impacts on their achievement.

Adam Pate, Whole School Transition Coordinator, who supervises this process in BISU, comments: “ There are certain steps we introduce to help students to adjust like setting up visits to the secondary school prior to students’ entry, teachers introducing students to approaches to learning they may encounter at secondary school. This includes providing an introduction to a more challenging curriculum, listening to students’ concerns about going to secondary school, encouraging students to be positive about change and to take up new challenges. The students get to break down the boundaries that can make them nervous about Secondary School.”.

These steps are designed to have a close up at secondary school and minimize the stress students might feel when they move from a smaller environment, where they are senior and well known, to a larger less personalized context.

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