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It’s never easy to switch to a new school, and it can even be scary. There are a few things you can do to smooth out the bumps. It helps to be patient, and to have someone to talk to.

This can help if:

  • you’re thinking of changing schools
  • you’ve just started at a new school
  • you’re about to start at a new school.
Girls problem solving at school

Changing schools

Most people have to start at a new school at least once, and lots of people change more than once. It's normal to feel weird and different in a new place, and to miss your old friends. Other things that could bother you are:

  • having to learn a different school layout
  • feeling shy or nervous about talking to new people
  • being drained from adjusting to all this new stuff
  • being bullied by people who want to pick on the new kid.

Making the process easier

The first few weeks at your new school are probably going to be bumpy, just because you’re new. But there are things you can do:

  • Do the things you like to do. Whether it’s playing music, sports, writing, drawing or anything else, there’ll be someone who’s into the same things as you.
  • Talk to people. They’re curious about you anyway, because you’re new, so if there’s someone you think you’d like, have a chat with them.
  • Keep in contact with your old friends – just because you’re not seeing them every day doesn’t mean you can’t stay close.
  • Be patient. It can be pretty annoying to have to learn how everything works and who everyone is again from scratch. But if you give it time, things will fall into place for you at your new school.

Find an ally

If all the changes are getting to you, find someone to talk with about it. They could be a friend from your old school, a family member, a counsellor or a doctor. Chatting with someone who’s distant from your situation can help.

If you would prefer to talk to someone anonymously, give Kids Helpline (1800 55 1800) or Lifeline (13 11 14) a call. They have counsellors available 24 hours a day.

What can I do now?