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Wondering how you’re supposed to have the next decade or more of your life mapped out when you’re still in school? Don’t worry, you’re not.

Your school years are for trying new things, building a support network and learning a range of skills that will help you learn more and open doorways later in life. Sure, you can start thinking about post-school options too – work, study, training, travel – but the thing is, school is a chance for you to try so much more, and get to know yourself in the process.

One thing is for sure. Nothing is more boring than doing nothing, so here’s some ideas to do something great.

Find support to make school work for you

If school feels like it’s not working for you because you don’t like being there, you can talk to a trusted teacher or the school guidance officer – to find how the school can help support you better. You could ask about flexible timetabling, options to help you catch up on missed classes or getting in touch with other support for family, financial or health needs. If you do need to access support outside of school, OnePlace has a range of services you can access.

Ask for change

You can talk to your school about what’s not working and see what they can do to help (remember, state schools must deliver inclusive and equitable education options, so there are many ways they can help support you and make school a better place to be so it doesn’t feel like this).

Make the most of your subject choice

In senior schooling, you can choose your subjects based on what you enjoy, what you’re good at, interested in or want to learn more about. Plus, if you know what you want to do after school, you can base your subjects on giving you the best start to achieving that.

Training and apprenticeships in school

If you take on a school-based apprenticeship or traineeship, you can access the school’s support, while getting hands-on experience and completing year 12. If you take on a school-based apprenticeship and traineeship you can study, work and train for a career, getting hands-on experience, while still working towards your QCE.

Career planning and guidance

After school, if you want to take any personality, strength or career assessment, you’ll have to front up the costs too. In school, you can access a range of these tools to help you get to know yourself, your strengths and your options for free. Grab ‘em while you can!

If you just don’t know, try something

You’re not alone. Heaps of young people don’t have a clue what they want to do after school – and certainly not in 10 years or for the rest of their lives! So don’t worry, you don’t have to have your life locked in stone right now. Staying in school and doing something that interests you is a great way to ensure that wherever you end up, you have the best chance to take on the world.

The thing is, sometimes we do have things in life that are difficult, learning how to manage setbacks now can help you overcome these in the future too. Either way, if you connect with someone in school about what not’s working, they can work through possible changes and support options that might be suitable.

Remember – you’re not your OP/ ATAR, grades or ranking and you’re not your teacher’s comment on that essay…

That won’t define your education or what you’ve got from these years. You do. What you take away in knowledge and understanding, in how you see yourself and the world and what you can do with those things. That’s the value of your education.

Last Updated: 23 June 2020