How does changing Schools affect a child ?

Children have to change school for a variety of reasons.Their parents may move jobs or split up and as a result the children have to change schools . Sometimes the changes happen when a parent chooses to move their child to a different school for personal or social reasons .

Whatever the reason it must be handled with extreme care as changes can have negative consequences.

Academic changes and Challenges

 The curriculum can vary within a grade from one school district to the next.Teachers may adjust their pace to fit a particular class. When the new child arrives they may be ahead or behind the new class.Teachers also have different style of teaching and new students may have to take time to adapt.In the 1990’s a study by the American Medical Association ,involving ten thousand students, found that children who move frequently are 35 % more likely to fail a grade.It can also put a child academically behind by up to six months .The statistics further show that changing high schools puts students at a higher risk of in fact dropping out.

Peer Relationships

 Interaction with their peers is extremely important to children .They may leave a school where they know most of their classmates and move to a new school where they have to begin again to establish new friendships. This can be quite traumatic for a child.

Relationship between School /Parents and Child

An important part of the success of a school is that there is usual a strong co collaboration and working relationship between schools and parents. This takes time to build .This makes it difficult and challenging for all parties to begin building a strong relationship.It can also take a while for records from the previous school to arrive .

Disruption to a class

A new student can have an effect on the class dynamics . It s not only that new students have to adjust, its the fact that their new classmates have to as well . In addition a teacher normally has to take time out from normal schedules to assess and assimilate new children.

Increases the risk of Psychotic Symptoms

 Recent research has found that children who had changes schools three or four times in their childhood were found to be at least 60 % more likely to display at least one psychotic symptoms .

Studies have also shown that changing schools can often lead to feelings of low self esteem.

Census information suggests that up to 18% of American school age children change homes in any given year.Most children will transfer to a new school or district at least once before they graduate from high school .

Sometimes it is unavoidable that a child must change schools . If this is the case then everything must be done to make the transition as smooth as possible .Whatever the reason for changing schools ,working closely and positively with your child and their new school will be in their best interests.