Growing Pains

Being a teenager is a battle within itself, but growing up from a teenager to an adult is an even more difficult task. Teenagers have to survive immense amounts of change like graduating high school and going off to college. How does a high school student survive this change of turning into a adult? To survive one must challenge himself every day as in to ease into adult responsibilities. A way to ease into adult life is to have high schools hold students to higher standards to prepare them for the real world. High schools should better prepare students for the real world by holding students to an adult standard.

Holding students to an adult standard will help the students in the real world where adults are expected to be prepared, and live up to their actions. An adult standard is when adults take responsibility for their actions; an adult standard is when one achieves his best by making it his best; an adult standard is when one stands up for himselves and is not coddled through life. When students get catered to through high school they can have emotional instability that can lead to levels of anxiety and depression for what lies ahead whether it be college or a career. Ashley Ching, a college student from California, said, “Coddled in high school, I was a white-knuckled, straight-A perfectionist. By my junior year…I was drowning in rigorous coursework…I dealt with stress and destructive choices making my plight even worse” (Ching). When high schools do not coddle their students their anxiety and depression levels lower for what the future holds because they are already exposed to the rigorous work of college or a job.

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Schools, specifically teachers, can stop coddling their students and hold them to an adult standard by limiting their second chances, making them accountable for their work, and installing strict deadlines. In addition Hugh B. Prince, a respected author said, “The standards students are expected to meet should be pegged to the proficiencies that real people need to succeed in the real world. The purpose of every school, whatever its setting or resources, is to educate children for what lies ahead of them — further education for some, jobs for most, citizenship, somewhere, for all” (Prince). This standard that he talks about is not one that is not a standard for a child. It is standard that teaches young adults how to succeed in the real world by having school challenge and teach them how to take responsibility for their actions and to be an adult.

He is stating that this is what schools need to be doing in order for students to be prepared. Another example of how high schools can help students by holding them to an adult standard is said by Caralee J. Adams, a well respected writer who has written multiple articles for Education Week, said, “To help students prepare for the challenges of college and the workplace, high schools need to emphasizes rigor and academic supports to help all students succeed. That may mean ramping up Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate programs. The common standards will require deeper learning and holding high school students to higher standards for college and career readiness” (Adams).

The key to college and career readiness, also known as the real world, is being challenged in high school. This is how they will be prepared for the real world. Without high schools implementing and encouraging these adult standards on high school students most students will come out of high school unsure of how to handle adult life. People will argue that if high schools hold students to a adult standard, especially a more “adult” or “college” academic standard, that students will have to focus more time on school rather than on extracurricular, friends, and family. But while time will be lost achievement will be gained.

For example if high schools install and encourage students to take more honors and Ap level classes it will hold them to a college standard therefore preparing the student for college. Students who succeed in these higher-level courses will then be rewarded not only with the skill of college readiness, but also college credits. These credits translate into more time for extracurricular, friends, and family while in college. Overall having high schools hold students to an adult standard will make them more prepared for the real world. They will cope with the challenges better making the transition into their future easier.

Not coddling them will teach them how to deal with the rigorous stress and work of adult life. These standards will also educate teenagers on what lies ahead for them. Also having higher-level course availability will teach students deeper learning and college and career readiness. High schools need to take action and see that if they hold students to a more adult standard it will help them in transitioning from a teenager to an adult.