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Heading back to school after being suspended can make you feel pretty uncomfortable.

Depending on the reason for your suspension, you might be feeling things like:

  • Anger
  • Shame
  • Fear
  • Worry
  • Embarrassment
  • Anxiety

Those feelings are normal, and with help, you will be able to cope as your friends and teachers welcome you back to school.

It’s scary – but with a little preparation, you can make the transition back to school after being suspended a whole lot easier. Here’s some tips for making the journey back a smooth one, and will set you up for a better overall experience at school.

Face up to the facts

You got suspended for a reason. Maybe it felt unfair, but if you look at it from other people’s points of view (like a teacher or other students) you might just find that there was a solid reason for why you were suspended. Once you accept that, you’re opening your eyes to the things you need to avoid doing in the future.

If you need to talk to someone about what happened, and your feelings about it, see a teacher you trust or the guidance officer.

Learn from mistakes

Yes, it’s important to reflect and to learn from your mistakes, but It’s common when you’re young to want to push the boundaries and take risks. What’s important is to learn from those mistakes and make sure you don’t repeat them.

See it as a fresh start

It can be hard to move past the memories of the stuff that got you suspended in the first place, but if you see your return to school as a fresh start, that headspace will help create a positive attitude and behaviour. So if you’re worried that your teachers and peers have made up their mind about you based on what you did before, prove them wrong! Show them all of the amazing skills, knowledge and ambitions you have!

Realise that it’s not the end

Just because you’ve been suspended doesn’t mean people think badly about you or that you’re going to suffer from a poor reputation with your friends and teachers.. Everyone makes mistakes, the important thing is to learn from them. If you’re worried about how it’ll impact your future, here’s the facts:

  • While your suspension or exclusion will be recorded, it won’t be public information. Only you, your parents, and your school will have access to your records. Employers, universities and training organisations do not have access to any of these records.
  • When you apply for a job, your report card won’t show whether you’ve been suspended or excluded. It will however show how many days you didn’t go to school.

The next steps…

Hopefully you’re feeling a little more prepared for your return to school. While it can definitely feel daunting, remember that your teachers want to see you succeed. Show them that you have the ability to make a change and that you can move past the incident.

If you are still worried about returning to school, or you’re feeling unmotivated and lost about school in general, it’s important to speak to others. We’d recommend talking to your teachers, school guidance counselor or by checking out some other helpful resources on our support page.

If you're feeling overwhelmed and don't know where to start visit our support page