Talking to teachers

You may sometimes need support from your teachers: more time for assignments, quiet time out of class to think, or someone to help you work out a study plan.

Some teachers may understand your situation better than others. Here’s how other young carers have handled talking to their teachers. 

1. Don't be afraid to stand up for yourself

Just be strong and stand up. If a teacher puts you down, remember that's just their opinion.’ - Sarah

2. Choose what you share

You don't want to feel singled out—almost like you've got this neon sign above your head. You can just feel that when they go past, they look at you different.

Don't feel that you need to say everything. It's okay to just say, “I couldn't get the assignment in because Mum's in hospital”. That sort of thing.’ - Kara

3. Find an advocate or ally

If you feel like you’re not being heard, seek the support of someone you trust. If you’ve got a teacher who’s been good, maybe they could talk to other staff and explain where you’re coming from.’ - Tegan

4. Know your rights

It's actually illegal for teachers to discriminate against me because I'm a carer. When I was in high school, I had a teacher call me a slacker. They can't do that, but I didn't know it at the time.’ - Braidon

Useful resources

You can also show this resource to the teacher, which will give them some tips on how to work with young carers.