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Negative Feelings about Leaving School

All 63 participants responded to the question ‘What’s not good about leaving school?’

Missing people came top (27 listings) with ‘missing friends’ being mentioned by 15 young people:

“I think just leaving people behind that I know and my friends and family. Just having someone to speak to.”

One young person impacted by domestic abuse felt very unprepared for leaving:

“I don’t feel ready to leave school yet – I don’t think I have enough knowledge about what I could go on to do later in life … I don’t think I have the confidence yet …… I don’t think I’ve had enough support yet for leaving school.”

For another young person on the autistic spectrum, transition happened too fast:

“I felt I was pushed to move forward too quickly – I wanted to gradually leave school and then eventually find a job. I was pressured into something I didn’t want to do …. I like to get used to things. I did tell them it was too fast and my key teacher did slow down but I wasn’t so confident to speak to other teachers about this.”

Two young people expressed concern that their additional support needs will adversely affect their ability to work:

“It’s having dyslexia and I don’t have high qualifications ….”

“I used to think I couldn’t get a job because of what was wrong with me – that was my own thoughts. My head would tell me I would never get a job … but my mum and dad always told me I could do what I wanted even with the things that were wrong.”

This young person on the autistic spectrum felt the sudden withdrawal of support:

“I lost lots of support when I left school – my ASN teacher, support worker, Children’s Services Worker, children’s social worker.”

A young person with mental health problems and transitioning gender the loss of people who had long-term knowledge about them was a concern:

“My Guidance teacher is not the best but does have the knowledge and history of what has gone on with me … the people that I have to meet now are not going to be fully …. aware of my mental health and that will have to all be explained again if I have a particular bad time.”

3 of these young people had specific worries financial circumstances:

“My friends’ parents are already saving up for them going away and it’s really difficult when your parents are living on benefits because they can’t work because of their disabilities.”