Acceptance of Diversity Starts Early in Life
By: Grace Molinaro FCHS
It was a Friday night after an exhausting school week. My mind felt like frayed threads after slaving over mountains of Advanced Placement (AP) work that I hoped would someday catch the eyes of college admission officers. I had just begun to liberate the knots of stress throbbing in my temples when it struck me-- I had an online assignment due at 11:59 PM There would be no relaxing Friday evening! For better or worse, this is the reality that high school students now face.
Parents pressure their kids to perform well academically by earning good grades. Schools urge students to take rigorous courses and participate in extracurricular activities, sports, and art programs to appeal to colleges while exploring their interests. Teachers pile students with work. Like previous generations, students struggle to manage time, pushing through stress and exhaustion. The future looms, instilling fear and creating motivation.
But students also face challenges unique to this generation. College acceptance is becoming more competitive, and students feel obliged to take more advanced classes. According to College Board, the number of students enrolled in AP courses nationwide has nearly doubled in the past ten years. Technology adds an additional layer of pressure, stress, and frustration by keeping students plugged in to their schoolwork around the clock.
The advent of social media has only exacerbated these issues by keeping students continuously linked through the smartphones in their pockets. Students today have to navigate social relationships while simultaneously juggling schoolwork. With mounting social and academic pressure, mental health can deteriorate. Many high school students feel overwhelmed, anxious, or depressed. So, how do today’s students cope? They use technology to relax themselves, which just creates more stress.
High school has never been easy, and modern technology coupled with competitive academics continue to create new hurdles for students. It is tough, especially at 11:59 PM on Friday nights, but students will get through it. Someday, they will look back on high school and realize it was just one of life’s challenges.
Falls Church High School
7521 Jaguar Trail
Falls Church, VA 22044
(Students who reside on the north side of Annandale attend Falls Church High School)