High School no longer a learning institution but a scramble for good grades

editorial staff

It used to be that high school served the purpose of educating students, but it seems as if in the past six years high school is becoming increasingly a means to get into college. Rarely today will you find a student who is learning purely for the sake of learning.

The overriding cause of this issue is the incredible pressures being put on students inside the classroom. The foremost creator of stress is the dreaded point system: students today are rarely graded on how creatively they can present information in ways meaningful to them, instead we are awarded points for how well we can regurgitate facts and fill out worksheets. A sad example is that most students instinctively whip out calculators after a test in order to calculate their percentage instead of reading through the questions to find out what they got wrong and why. Secondly, applying to colleges causes stress as students begin to feel the need to fit the outline of what they think a college wants. Another common stress or on high school students is the misconception that kids that are labeled “smart” have to take advanced classes.

These stressors cause high schoolers to forget the real purpose of school. As points become more and more important to students, the actual learning process loses its importance: oftentimes students cheat, copy, and fake their way through worksheets that teachers don’t care about anyway just to receive the points. Then as they begin applying for colleges, students suddenly begin to care less about what they are learning and instead worry about what colleges think they are learning. Lastly, it seems to have become a common belief that certain students have to take all advanced classes. Unfortunately, this means that some students will never have time to focus on what truly interests them.

But, there are things that can be done about this pitiable perception of high school. Students: try to find some kind of enjoyment in the classes you take rather than focusing on the points you are earning; if this means that you may pay more attention to one subject than another, so be it. Maybe even try to take advanced classes in that subject, but don’t overload yourself with classes you’re not interested in. Even if your grades aren’t stellar and not all of your classes are AP, you will still get into college. And, teachers, know that you can help too; don’t categorize students by their grades, keep an eye out for students who show interest in your subject and don’t stress points to them, but rather encourage students to learn the material for their own sake.