We advocate for the interests, rights and wellbeing of children and young people

Education matters to me: Transitions



14 March 2018

Many students shared the effort that their schools have put in to enable new students to adjust to their new school or class. However, many children and young people still feel unsure even of the most basic things in their new environment, like where classrooms are situated, or how to get around the campus. 

Being given time to establish a sense of belonging and familiarity, through a more comprehensive induction including targeted orientation activities and resources in the first weeks such as buddy systems, maps, and opportunities to get to know staff could help make the process of settling in and being ready to learn quicker and more effective.

Children and young people who experience multiple transitions within each school year or high staff turnover in their classrooms need extra support to develop and maintain relationships with each new teacher. They said they need their teachers (not just the dean or senior leadership team) to notice when something is wrong, find out what is causing it, and support them to find solutions.

“Better relationships with the teachers so we feel more comfortable about changing” (Secondary school student, Asian)

“Listen to the students more on what’s going on between the students which could be harmful. Put aside the school reputation and listen to the students for a better environment.” (Secondary school student, Fijian Indian)

“Not have too many students in a classroom (Like joining two classes together) because then students can't get as much 1:1 from the teacher and harder to get to know everyone in it.” (Secondary school student, NZ European)

“Adding a few days at the end of the intermediate year to visit the college and to get more used to the routine” (Secondary school student, Māori/NZ European)

“When a teacher changes in the middle of the year a better hand over on what has been taught and what needs to be taught is required” (Secondary school student, NZ European)



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