Graduation Blues

Graduation season is coming up. It’s all any high school senior can think about. Some people are sad to leave their friends and go off to college, others are counting down the days until they finally get their freedom. Or you could be the one stuck in the middle. The person that doesn’t have anyone close enough to them to miss, but’s still afraid of being on their own. The thought of graduation seems like a black hole, consuming every thought of senior year.

It’s a shame that this day should weigh so heavily on high school seniors. A day that serves as a trophy the accomplishments of 12 years of there lives. But that’s just it. The pressure of graduation day has been building up for 12 years. Is it too much? Kids should be encouraged to set and achieve academic goals, but the pressure of this landmark seems to distract from the academic importance of finishing high school.

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The graduation ceremony should be an uplifting ceremony. Instead, it’s a source of anxiety for teens. At the start of the senior year, students are called into the first of several meetings depicting all the important dates. The events nobody should dare to miss because you’ll regret it for the rest of your life. Then you hear the horror stories of senior years gone wrong.

The person that tripped in front of 5,000 people at graduation because she couldn’t walk in her shoes. The girl that was remembered for years to come, spoken about at the high school reunions. Students know that their senior year is their legacy. It is in your senior year that you make every memory, that you decide your future, that you take the next step. There’s enough pressure just choosing your future, your final days in high school shouldn’t be more daunting than that.

Faculty and parents shouldn’t put so much pressure on their students for such a simple ceremony. The ceremony should be about the kids. Not about the parents or the faculty showing off their children to the community like they’re cattle at the show. Instead, we should make graduation a happy occasion for the students. Take the pressure of a simple walk through a room off of the students’ shoulders, so they can continue to focus on their academic studies.

AP testing occurs only a few weeks before seniors don their cap and gown to receive their diplomas. The last part of high school is still very important, and parents and teachers should be keeping the students on track because they can’t afford to check out. If we remove some of the pressure from these seniors, the pressure that is most unnecessary of senior pressures, maybe we can keep seniors from getting overwhelmed, so they don’t check out before their high school career is over. Graduation day is easily one of the most distracting parts of seniors last year in high school. It is easy for parents and teachers to help ease away the pressure of attending this ceremony, yet instead, they pile the pressure on tenfold.

Seniors should look forward to their high school’s conclusion but it shouldn’t distract them from what really matters.