What If My Teen Is Considering Leaving School Early?

child considering to leaving school early

One of the first career decisions your teenager will make is whether or not to complete Year 12 or its equivalent.

Research shows young people who study beyond Year 10 are more likely to:

  • find employment,
  • earn a higher salary,
  • achieve promotions and pay rises.

However, some young people feel that senior high school is just not for them. This could be for various reasons. The student may experience learning difficulties, or may struggle to cope with the competing demands of home, social life, and part-time work. Perhaps they are dealing with emotional or physical challenges. Factors like these can influence a young person’s ability to make an informed decision.

As a parent or guardian, you may initially feel a sense of disbelief and helplessness if your child contemplates this option. However, you need to support them by discussing the impact their choice may have on their future career.

Start by encouraging your child to complete the Career Quiz and/or the Job Fit Test. Both of these Skillsroad tools remind students of the bigger picture and provide information on the necessary skills they'll need to start working in their dream job. 

You can also advise your teen about the option of a school-based Apprenticeship or Traineeship. This will allow them to stay in school part-time, while simultaneously gaining valuable work experiencing and undertaking vocational education. This ultimately leads to a nationally recognised qualification.

Many potential students who felt they didn't "fit" into the standard academic system have thrived  when offered the opportunity to participate in a school-based Apprenticeship or Traineeship or other VET courses while still at school. The opportunity to learn in a practical environment and get some work experience while completing their schooling can make a huge difference.

It’s also important to ensure your teen is aware of the multitude of other education and training pathways available today. Even if they leave school early, they can opt to study at TAFE full time, or undergo a traineeship or apprenticeship under the Australian Apprenticeships program.

Is your child ready to start applying? 

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