Article by Gina Spampinato

Back to school blues? Clinical psychologist reveals the four secrets to secondary school success

“Transitioning to secondary school is a huge milestone, at a time when children are also going through the early stages of puberty – and the physical, psychological and emotional changes that come with it. It can all feel daunting and exciting at the same time, and as their parent, you’re the best person to guide them through it.

“Boost your child’s self-esteem by focusing on their strengths and noticing the ways they’ve grown, build their confidence by letting them take small, safe risks in and outside the home, and encourage their excitement by chatting about the opportunities ahead they’re looking forward to. But critically, don’t neglect the more difficult emotions they might be experiencing – whether it’s worries about going somewhere new or sadness about leaving friends behind, ensure they feel heard and supported and work it through together.”

Dr Martha Deiros Collado, clinical psychologist, author and parenting expert
“It’s not just kids who have worries and concerns around going back to school – it’s an emotional time for parents as well. Hopefully these findings reassure them that it’s absolutely normal and we’re all in the same boat. By teaming up with Dr Martha, we're aiming to empower as many families as we can with the information and support they need at this critical time in their children’s lives – to help them take on this next big adventure.

We know from our experience at Rooster that going to school can be a milestone for children feeling more independent. Whether it's getting transport to school on their own, gaining more independence with their money or doing more with their friends. The key thing is acknowledging and giving them independence, but making sure there’s always a listening ear for support when they need it.”

Will Carmichael, CEO of NatWest Rooster Money