Preparing for Transfer Test Results

If you had a child who sat the Transfer Test last November, I’m sure you know that the long-awaited results will be released in less than two weeks (27th January). Not thinking about the results is easier said than done for many parents and children. 

Feeling anxious or excited about how they performed in the test and how it will affect their future is natural. I know that children across Northern Ireland worked their socks off for a year, and it may seem that the results on the SEAG website dashboard (results will not be sent via post) on that Saturday morning will decide if it was worth the effort. Regularly, I say that the main purpose of the Transfer Test journey is to help prepare children for their ‘big school’ wherever that may be. It is a busy year in which children cover the curriculum rapidly and repetitively whilst developing their test techniques, all of which help lay a strong foundation for secondary school. Indeed, some of my previous students prepared and took the Transfer Test and achieved an A but did not want to go to a grammar school; they wanted to do the test for all the aforementioned reasons.

Planning for all Outcomes

As every child is unique, it is essential to set expectations. In the build-up to results day, try focusing on their effort throughout the year and their improvements in particular areas. Remind children that no piece of paper will define them or make you think any more or less of them, and you are proud of them regardless of any outcome. If you are planning to go for a post-results treat, put the plans in place before the results are released, showing your child that you are delighted with their effort no matter what. 

Recently, my daughter pulled a book from the bookshelf in my office. It had sat there for over a year. The book was Oh the Places You’ll Go by Dr.Seuss and was a gift from one of my first Transfer Test students in 2019. My daughter has taken a real shine to it, meaning we have read it about twenty times in two weeks! It is a wonderful book for children preparing to receive exam results as it discusses the ups and downs in life. Sometimes, things will go your way, and sometimes, things will go against you. The overall message is that no matter what, if you keep going, ‘Kid, you’ll move mountains!’ My favourite extract from the book is, ‘You’ll pass the whole gang and you’ll soon take the lead. Wherever you fly, you’ll be the best of the best. Wherever you go, you will top all the rest. Except when you don’t. Because, sometimes, you won’t. I’m sorry to say so but, sadly, it’s true that Bang-ups and Hang-ups can happen to you. You can get all hung up in a prickle-ly perch. And your gang will fly on. You’ll be left in a lurch.” Thankfully Dr Seuss continues to explain that any sadness is temporary and no matter what, ‘You’ll find bright places’. 

Preparing for exam results requires planning for all eventualities in a caring and supportive environment with a positive mindset. At Education Support Hub, we strive for our best, aiming to unlock every child’s maximum potential while developing a hardworking ethic. I often find that everything else falls into place if you focus on this.