From education to employment

FE staff also need emotional support during results season

FE and HE staff were once again on hand to provide emotional support to students receiving their all-important A-level results yesterday, as they were also being assessed themselves by the media, the public and their superiors.

Education charity Recourse believes the pressure placed upon staff during this time needs to be recognised. The charity offers practical and emotional support to these people, but there is a fear that spending cuts, lack of places, and an increased pressure on them during the day of A-level results and the coming weeks will leave some vulnerable to criticism.

Julian Stanley, chief executive of Recourse, explained: “While the media coverage of exam results will focus on students’ immediate reactions to their grades, we need to remember that results day has ramifications for lecturers, tutors and admissions staff too.

“While we all rely on them to adopt a professional manner in dealing with disappointed students, it’s important that we care for their wellbeing by providing the support they need.”

During the months between January and June this year, Recourse and its sister charity Teacher Support Network received 116 calls from education staff on the issue of exam results. This is a 46 per cent increase on the same period in 2011, with the annual total already doubling between 2010 and 2011. This means that teachers, tutors and education professionals are becoming increasingly stressed and anxious around results day.

According to Stanley, the situation becomes worse when some parents become argumentative if their children do not get the grades they were predicted, which in turn adds to an already pressurised environment.

“Some parents become confrontational when their children aren’t awarded the grades they were predicted, especially now that £9,000 tuition fees have raised the stakes for families,” he said.

The Recourse charity has published guidance for staff to help them manage their wellbeing during Clearing. It includes advice on communication, stress and time management.

Kyle Northern

Related Articles