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Challenge: Back to School

3 Ways Parents Can Help Combat Senioritis

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Your student is only one short school year away from graduation, adulthood, and possibly college. As a parent, this may seem to have come all too fast – but to your student, it likely seems to be taking forever, and the motivation for this year may be out the window. Worried your student will catch a critical case of senioritis? Help combat the infamous issue with these three tips.

1. Keep his or her eye on the end goal

Exciting things are at the end of senior year! There is senior prom and graduation, then summer vacation and starting college (if that is the route your student is going). However, if your student falls into a senior slump, it may jeopardize those things. School activities may come with a GPA minimum, and a drop in grades could hurt – or even negate – college acceptance. Make sure your student sees the grand finale of high school as a reward not yet earned. To get those things he or she so badly wants, the work has to continue through the end of the school year. Aren’t prizes like that worth just one more year?

2. Make your expectations clear

If your student has been dedicated and hard-working his or her entire life, make it clear that you expect the same drive and motivation this year. While your student may be aware of expectations from school, making your – and his or her own – baseline expectations known can help reinforce the fact that senior year is not a time to slack off. Talk about his or her schedule together. What grades does your student expect or want to earn? What amount of studying needs to be done?

3. Be aware of senior year requirements

From midterms and finals to AP exams, a student’s senior year is – contrary to the misconception of some students – still full of challenges and responsibilities. If you’re concerned, keep track of these large requirements and bring them up in conversation over time. A few months from a major exam, ask how he or she is feeling about it. Toward the end of the semester, bring up midterms and see what he or she is thinking. Your student may be distracted with the thoughts of future changes; if all else fails, you can help prompt his or her memory about upcoming obligations.

To a certain extent, a bit of senioritis is understandable and likely harmless. However, the diploma is not yet in hand; make sure your student keeps up the hard work!

For more tips and strategies to help your student succeed in school, visit

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