How Much Do Academic Grades Really Matter to You?


“When your children fall short, it doesn’t mean you’ve failed, it is just means you’re not yet finished.”
~ Jaci Mun-Gavin

The stressful exam period is over, I’m sure all of you – parents with schooling kids – are rejoicing now. It’s a fact that exam period is exceptionally stressful for parents and kids. Many of us would go the extra miles to prepare our kids for their exam – be it major public exams, or just normal school exams.

From getting our hands on past-year papers from elite schools to stocking up bottles of chicken essence, taking leave from work for last-minute revisions, and drafting grand revision plans, we’re getting increasingly hands-on. Give me a high five! =)

People labelled us as “kiasu parents”, but who cares. The good thing is, it brings us closer to our kids as we tackle questions together, revise for exam together, encourage them through the little things, or simply being there for them. That’s the beauty of family bonding over exams amidst the stress.

When exam is finally over, we’ve to brave ourselves for their results. When the results are not a true representation of their hard works, we plunged into disappointment. And even so, we had to hide our feelings so as not to further discourage our children. We heard of news that kids commit suicide over poor exam results, and we feared losing our loved ones.

Every cycle, I went through shock, disbelief, denial and finally acceptance. It’s hard not to panic when Edison starts coming home with test results below expectations. How much do academic grades really matter to me, you may wonder. Well, it doesn’t matter as much as I thought it would be.

While walking home with Edison last week, I was listening with half an ear as he chirped on about his last day at school. Last day in P3, I mean. And then, something about his Chinese compo test caught my attention.