Year 12 students focus on career pathways, not just HSC

OVER the next four weeks year 12 students face what could be the biggest tests of their school lives.

Some students have been studying consistently for the last year, while others picked up the pace as the end of the school year loomed.

Many of the kids spent the October school holidays with their heads in the textbooks, while others have admitted they’ve left their revision to the very last minute.

Some of them have detailed their strategies for study and are targeting the hardest subjects first that will have the most value towards their Australian Tertiary Admissions Ranking (ATAR) marks.

Whatever their study methods might be we hope they leave the exam rooms after each test feeling like they gave it their best shot.

The High School Certificate exams are a rite of passage for every year 12 student.

But is this important piece of paper gradually losing its meaning? 

For some the HSC results bring welcome news, but many others will be disappointed and it is difficult to escape the belief that your HSC marks really matter and will affect your future career. Schools talk up its importance, because for them, it is. The Board of Studies release rankings which show where a school sits, judged by how their students fared in the HSC.

Your exam results are marks given to one thing you wrote down, once. It is not a number that reflects your worth, and it does not always define your career.

Once used to gain entry into university, no one else will care about the mark. If you’re not going to university, it won’t matter.

Oscar-winning film maker Quentin Tarantino and Tumblr founder David Karp both left school at the age of 15, while former Prime Minister Paul Keating was 14 when he finished school.

And when it comes to the HSC there are plenty of examples of students who later got into university with low marks, while others have forged successful careers without any need of a tertiary education.

Regardless of whatever paths they choose in the future, as a community we should should be proud of these driven, motivated and conscientious young adults, who despite whatever the next four weeks of exams might throw at them, they know that afterwards they can still achieve their dreams, whatever shape or form.

Congratulations to the class of 2017 and best of luck with what lies ahead.