BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: Education
Front Page 
World 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Hot Topics 
UK Systems 
League Tables 
Features 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 

Wednesday, 23 May, 2001, 10:41 GMT 11:41 UK
Parents add to exam stress
exam room
Stressed from all sides?
Parents are being warned not to put their children under too much pressure at exam time.

An education expert has said some children are suffering not just from the worry of exams, but from the high expectations of their parents.

Dr Tony Wright, of the Open University, says that in some cases, it is as if the parents are taking the exams themselves.

"They want their children to get good grades because they feel it is a reflection of their parenting skills," he said.

"This can cause them to pressurise their children during the exam season to try to meet the expectations they have of them."

Fines for failure

Dr Wright, a specialist in education stress, said he knew of one case where parents gave their children money for passing exams but also fined them if they did not reach their expected grades.

He said: "Parents have to remember they can't take the exams for their children and that undue pressure from them can have a very negative effect."

Dr Wright said parents needed to take a long-term view of their child's progress and not be blinkered by the idea of short-term exam success.

Most of all, he said, children needed unconditional love and support.

"Some children blossom years after they take exams, when they find their niche and use talents that weren't apparent at school," said Dr Wright.

"At the end of the day, parents have to let go and trust their children. The most important thing is to provide support and love them for who they are, not for what exams they pass."

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
See also:

04 Aug 00 | Education
Exam overload 'stressing pupils'
09 Aug 00 | Education
Samaritans calm exam angst
01 May 01 | Education
Chocolate lure in war on exam stress
12 May 01 | Education
Promise to assess pupils' exam stress
Links to more Education stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Education stories