Rules, Reality, and Rolling with the Punches (A Student’s Message)

Have you ever noticed how unrealistic high schools are?  I can’t think of a single scenario in real life where society expects adults to wear identical outfits, ask permission to speak, and learn irrelevant tasks and information that become useless after the final exam.  Think about an average day in high school.  How often do adults require permission to carry out basic bodily functions?  “Boss, may I please use the washroom?” “Sorry to interrupt, boss, but do you mind if I eat this muffin?” It sounds ridiculous.

High school entirely ignores reality. Our days are structured to the hour with no room for adjustment.  We are also expected to be involved in our community AND sustain relationships with our families … as long as neither interferes with our studies.  Teachers encourage creativity, but we students are reprimanded for not handing in exactly what was asked for.  And the most exasperating aspect of high school?  The expectation that all students will accept being banned from all technology, at all times, without exception.  Is it just me, or is it insane to deny the fact that next year, I will be doing the work assigned via the class portal, and not the 10 questions on the handout and that those assignments will be emailed to my professors?  In my four years at high school, I’ve only had two teachers who accepted homework via email, and only two who used the internet on a regular basis.  How is this preparing us for the future??

A final argument (*ahem* complaint) that I would like to add to the irrationality of the high school system, is that yes, students do indeed have lives outside of school.  Some of us join sports teams, some of us have jobs, and some of us have some serious issues that we actually deem more important that the four questions on page 315 in the text.  Unfortunately for us, we do not have a supply student to send in when something important comes up.  Yes, I know you plan on marking every eight-page essay tonight and couldn’t possibly mark mine tomorrow, but it would relieve a lot of stress for both of us if you accepted that I, too, have a life and wasn’t able to make it in today.

And so, a message to teachers: technology is NOT going away and sometimes we have more important things to do than your homework.  You might just have to roll with it.

Just saying.

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