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The first week in September our high school students go back to school. I have a few suggestions for parents/students to help.

Once the school year begins make sure that your children’s classes are what you expected. Try and balance the classes to ensure that all of the hard courses are not in Semester 2.

Try and keep in mind to keep all doors open for education/career programs in grade 11/12. If possible ensure that the University level courses are included. University English, one or more Maths along with Biology, Chemistry and Physics keeps all of the options open for both university and college programs. Hard to be successful in college with high school college level courses. Those who wish to enter General Health Sciences have to remember that they will have to have a minimum of a B in all of your courses to have a chance to go into the Bachelor of Science Nursing program.

The vast majority of schools give out school planners that your son/daughter should use every day. Homework assignments, tests and extra curricular activities should be available for the parents to check. Let’s plan on uninterrupted 60-90 minutes of homework Sunday through Thursday. Phone calls/texting cell phone messages interrupts one’s train of thought. Part time work should be kept to a minimum (8-10 hours) on week-ends.

Entry university scholarships $1000-2,500 are based on the best 6 grade twelve credits with cut offs of around 85%. President’s scholarships (tuition/room and board) are 90% along with shown leadership

Parents with young male students should read the Lesser Report "parent role models" that shows that too many of our young men have been cast adrift for advise about the abuse of computer game addiction that rob their young men of success.

Extra curricular activities involving sports/students’ council, orchestra and a vast array of other opportunities helps improve one’s social life and makes school much more enjoyable.

Reading for fun improves language skills/spelling and punctuation. Every university/college has English as a mandatory requirement for acceptance. Athletes the likes of Michael Phelps/James Blake, make wonderful role models that your high school student can read about and emulate. Remember the axiom that: those who read succeed.

Encourage your teenager to hang out with some ‘fast horses’ in their school. The stats show us that 25% of their high achieving class mates are the best and 75% make us the rest.

Please discuss with your children ‘reasonable’ goals that they can attain this year. Without planning for the future the year can go bye so very quickly.

Try to keep open daily communication positive. How are you doing? and a pat on the back encourages success. Please do not try and compare your children’s accomplishments to others. Each teenager is unique and worthy of your praise.

Wishing you all a wonderful school year.

Len Lesser

Len Lesser posts a report every week

You can email Len at lenlesser@hotmail.com