PAFA Presents

On Monday 5 June PAFA presented 'The Parents Guide to Surviving the HSC'. More than 30 parents gathered in the Nexus theatrette to hear hot tips on "Surviving the HSC”. Jacqui Van de Veldt facilitated an interactive discussion and gave us some strategies for coping with the inherent stresses of schoolwork, co-curricular activities and social media.

Jacqui, who has more than 25 years’ experience in education, is the Research and Analytics Coordinator for The Resilience Doughnut and works with The Resilience Report and online training programmes. She has extensive professional experience in K-12 Schools, Adult and VET education as a teacher, trainer, school executive, school board member and educational consultant in areas of educational professional practice.

Here are some of the ideas that Jacqui presented:

  • Think of what you want for your kids and help them to think of the big picture: the HSC is the biggest thing that they have done but in the scheme of things it is not major- there will be bigger things
  • Our job is to support them and make them feel loved
  • We need to be their coach/ cheer squad/ sounding board and to be interested in what they are doing without taking over
  • We need to have high expectations of our children to encourage them but not so high that it causes anxiety.  Listen to our kids but don’t try to solve the issues for them. They may just want to vent.
  • We need to help them manage their time wisely and this includes limiting screen time and social media

The "Resilience Doughnut" is a model that incorporates our various strengths around us such as the parent community, your support/advice network.

Warning signs that you need to step in:

  • Missing school
  • Coming home late
  • Missing assignments
  • Going out every night
  • Emotional and reactive
  • Lashing out

If these things are happening, consider speaking to your child’s Head of House, House Tutor or another teacher. The Wellbeing Team might make a referral to see the School Psychologist. 

You can also contact Jen Jarret, the Director of Student Wellbeing, by phoning the School or emailing

There are many useful resources:

  • Exploring teens ( Facebook)
  • NSW Parent Council website/Facebook for articles on teens and education
  • Download the Learning Potential app
  • The Resilience Centre on Facebook
  • You can connect with Jacqui Van De Velde on Facebook or twitter

Dana Coleman | President

Finola Reay | Secretary