How Becks got the guts to head back to school

Becks regretted dropping out of school and feared ending up in a job she would hate. Read about how she got back into education.

Swallowing my pride

Going back to school was a big step for me. It meant facing my fears and swallowing my pride, and neither of those things are easy.

I never really enjoyed school much. I'm the kind of person who learns by doing, not by copying off a chalkboard for hours on end. I always struggled with being measured as a person by what I achieved in an exam. Besides, my interests lay in the performing arts, not biology or economics. So I dropped out of school halfway through a class.

Although being free from school seemed like a dream come true for the first few months, I quickly realised that it wasn't all fun outside of the school gates. I wanted to change the world with my music, but music jobs are hard to come by and I still had to pay the rent while I wasn't working. Without a school certificate, I found it hard to get a job in the field I’d been dreaming of.

A change of plans

For someone who stepped out of the school with stars in her eyes, that was hard to swallow. After a year, I realised that deep down, I did want to achieve more than that, and made inquiries about going back to school. After meeting with various people at the Board of Studies, I was given a school certificate on compensation because of a car accident during Year 10, and because I had done 3 units of music in Year 9.

Once you set your mind to something, there are always different ways to achieve your goals.

I decided I wanted to finish school by the time I turned 18, and I wanted to do Drama as a subject. I wanted a school that was a bit flexible in my schooling hours, and one that could support me. So I looked at the various schools in my area, and found that there were not that many that could accommodate my needs. Then I stumbled upon a school that offered flexiday, and allowed me to do as few or as many subjects as I wanted. It took 85 minutes each way to get to school, and I did 9 hours of school work a day, both in class and at home, plus homework. I managed to complete Years 11 and 12 in just over a year.

It wasn't easy, but I knew that I wanted to finish school to prove to myself that I could, and to give myself more options. I didn't have unrealistic expectations. I knew there was no way I'd get the marks to do Law or Medicine. So I told myself I'd be happy with what I got, so long as I finished my exams. And I did finish them, and now if I ever choose to leave the entertainment industry, I won't have to resort to jobs I know I’ll hate because I went back to school and gave myself that option.

What can I do now?

  • Meet Calypso, a self-confessed highly-strung, high achiever who has great advice about how to deal with stacks of stress.

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  • Read tips on how you can manage your time better.