Letting a 16 year old decide

Boy oh Boy, Why did I have to get the clever kid? This is tricky and challenging stuff.


In the UK, children take their exams aged 16, and then have to move on to higher education or apprenticeships or employment.  So at 16, they can stay in their own school or move schools if another tickles their fancy and they meet the criteria. This necessitates lots of driving on dark and wintery nights to campuses all over the region for a lecture and a look around.We started the looking around process last night and were surprised at the calibre of opportunities that were available.  However, I am easily swayed by passionate staff and a few statistics, so I will try to hold back the “Sign Her UP!”

On the way home from Young Women’s (Mormon youth club on Tuesday nights) afterward, Missy was talking to me about the choices she wanted to opt for but then added

“You’ve got that face on, what’s wrong?”

I did not know that I had “a face” or countenance of disagreement.  It was a surprise.  However, letting teens make their own (good) choices while keeping the (good) communication open is a balancing act, a difficult thing.  I did not want her taking maths and a course of further maths which then meant that Chemistry was in jeopardy.

I want a Scientist, darn it!  She is talented in the sciences and loves them, she finds it easy, and surely one set of higher maths would be enough to prove she can add up and subtract!

Her career choices are currently open at Economist, International Banker, Law or STEM.  She doesn’t fancy Medicine anymore (insert parental sad face here).

At her age, I was hoping to secure “a job”.  That’s it, that was the full extent of my hopes and plans so this is all new territory to me.  We’ll take it one step at a time, be led by those who have experience in these matters, and aim high.  She’s more than capable, I just have to have faith in the process.  Here’s to hoping.



Author: Pollyanna Whyte

Single LDS Mormon Mum/Mom living in England. This is my blog on emotional health, fun, parenting, life, divorce, starting over, friends, family, church things, and budgeting. Stop by, tell us what you think, feel free to share (but credit the source please).

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