Anxious wait for matrics

2015-12-17 06:00

MATRIC pupils finished writing their National Senior Certificate examinations (NSC) last month.

This year saw 201 141 registered candidates in KwaZulu-Natal alone write the exams, but now for many of them an uneasy period begins as they count down towards the release of their results on January 6.

KZN education psychologist Logan Govender warned that many of these pupils will be facing a challenging path ahead while waiting for their results. Govender believes that the support of those living close to them in this time will be crucial.

Govender said pupils will be going through different individual psychological reactions triggered by the anxiety of waiting to know find out how they performed.

However, for some, he said there will be “pockets of high expectations and excitement”.

“These would be those who have prepared since foundation phase, and have had consistent support, including support related to preparing and planning for life after matric,” Govender said.

“Even these children may be anxious about whether the final results will match their own and their parents’ expectations which over a period of time may have been set quite high.”

Meanwhile, some will be going through stress and “pervasive ambivalence”.

“These are pupils with little or no future prospects and for them being in the harsh glare of the public spotlight will contribute to a burden which will result in excessive anxiety”, said Govender.

He said these are high indicators for either suicidal thoughts or “even direct attempts at suicide or self-harm”.

“We have had far too many tragic experiences of loss of young lives in this period. Parents and all those of us in the environment of a matriculant who has just written the exams are advised at this time to take a gentle approach and not flood the child with the pressures of our own expectations,” advised Govender.

Govender provided tips for matrics awaiting their results:

• We should advise our matrics in this “awaiting results” period to engage in sports and other positive pursuits rather than dwelling upon results. They have done their best and now it’s time to put their faith in the examiners and markers.

• When the results are published and you believe the marks in a “paper” are not the true reflection of what you think your effort was worth, then you could apply for a recheck of marks.

• Under some conditions you can be eligible for taking the supplementary exam in a subject or “paper”. Check these conditions with your school.

• If you have failed, repeating Grade 12 is also an option. So failure, while it may make one feel sad and bad, is not the end of the road. Virtually all of us have at some stage or other repeated something to get it right. That’s what life is all about — “get up and try — never say die”.

- The Witness

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