Back to school or starting school

Going back to school after the summer holidays is often tough for children and young people. However, this year it might be more difficult than usual. It might be particularly hard if your child is starting a new school, without having had the normal introduction sessions.

There are lots of things you can do to help your child with going back to school or starting a new school.

Children in school

Help your child get ready for back to school

  • Talk to your child about starting/going back to school and what this means.
  • Encourage your child to talk to you about anything they are worrying about.
  • Make sure your child is getting enough sleep. Read our advice on getting your child back into a sleep routine before they go back to school.
  • Have a plan for your new morning routine and try this in the run up to schools starting. Make sure there’s time for breakfast, getting dressed and getting out the door.
  • Make sure school bags are packed before the first day. There will be lots to think about on the day, so try and make it less stressful by being prepared.
  • Plan your journey. You can practice this with your child before the first day, so there is one less unknown.
  • Be positive when dropping off your child. If you can, hide your anxieties as your child will pick up on these. Be happy, smile and be enthusiastic. But seek support and reassurance for your own worries.
  • Due to COVID-19, infant schools may not be so ‘hands on’ with children, so if your child is starting school, it might help to buy things like elasticated trousers and skirts and velcro shoes. These are easier for a child to put on themselves, buttons, zips, laces and buckles can be difficult for a child to do independently.
  • Talk to your child’s school and ask them for any information about going to school that they can share with you. They may have videos, or tips on what to expect. You can share any concerns you may have with them so that they are better prepared to support your child when they start.
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