HSC Parents and Mental Health – increasing support

After five previous blog posts written especially for HSC parents, we have come to the last blog post for this...

After five previous blog posts written especially for HSC parents, we have come to the last blog post for this series! Take a look HERE at the other posts and their various strategies for the many different ways that you can support your child’s education in the lead up to their final HSC exams. The first three posts looked at the ways you can help ensure your child maintains their physical well-being,whilst these last three posts have looked at the emotional/mental support that you can give to your child.


In the last post in this series, we will wrap up the emotional elements of support that you can provide to your child during their HSC year, followed by some tips for providing extra academic support.


Supporting students emotionally

Most (if not all) students in Year 12 will experience some level of stress, often without any obvious indicators. Many fear that they might let their family down.Others fear that they will not be able to match the performance of siblings or relatives. Moderate levels of stress can be useful to maintain motivation, but if your child’s stress levels become too high, some proven strategies for them include:

  1. Find their release valve: this might be exercise, or taking time out with friends, or reading…
  2. Relaxation: smartphone apps like Smiling Mind or some sort of meditation
  3. Time Management: make a list of tasks and prioritise
  4. Connect: with others – talk about your worries, laugh and be positive!


For parents, your role is vital in protecting their mental health! You can:

  1. Practical support: take them to the library if they need it, or buy stationary
  2. Listen: and offer your support when they need it, be there for them!
  3. Identify: stressful situations at school, home or work for them
  4. Help solve: find other ways to solve practical and emotional problems
  5. Be there: be there for them! In the background or foreground, it doesn’t matter – make yourself available!


Academic support

Places to access academic support include:

  1. Teachers: contact your child’s teachers if you feel there is something each should know
  2. Tutoring: targeted and intensive is beneficial is your child struggles in group situations
  3. Online: https://studentsonline.bostes.nsw.edu.au/go/seniorstudyprovides information on the HSC process including assessments, exams, marking, results etc.
  4. HSC in the Holidays: free resources, seminars and subject-specific lectures/workshops to help your child achieve their best – https://hscintheholidays.com.au


*According to the Mission Australia Youth Survey in 2012, coping with stress and school or study problems remain major concerns for respondents. Research has shown that Year 12 can increase rates of depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts and even suicide. In particular, the fear of failure and the apparent lack of prospects as a result of poor results in Year 12 were identified as major stressors for many young people. As well as managing school, many young people were also trying to cope with work, family and social commitments. The cumulative effect of these demands appears to be leaving many young people feeling besieged and struggling to cope.