High school vs the real world

Grace Bates, Writer

High school is supposed to prepare students for college, but are high schools succeeding in preparing them?

According to Hechingerreport.org, “students are getting out of high school without the skills they need to succeed in college.”

With students not getting the proper skills they need in high school, it sets them back going into college, which can lead to a more difficult transition.

Some students feel like they’re prepared while others feel differently.

“I feel like the purpose of high school in general is to give everyone a basic understanding of all the major subjects so that they can specialize in anything they want in college, I do feel like BFA has done an efficient job at that,” Eros Bouley-Swedo (‘18) said.  

With students feeling like high school has prepared them for college, their confidence level rises.

Preston Randall, the Guidance Director, talked about how Bellows Free Academy has opportunities for students to get a feel of what being on a college campus would feel like.

“We find opportunities to bring students on campus. We take field trips to Johnson State College, to Plattsburgh. This past year, in one day students were able to see Saint Mike’s, UVM, and Champlain College, not necessarily because we think these are the colleges we think our students need to go to. Even If I have no interest in those colleges, just spending time on a college campus, even if it’s not the one I’ll end up going to, it lets you start to imagine what it would be like to be there,” Randall said.

High school is supposed to prepare someone for college, but also for the career world. Not everybody goes to college after they graduate high school.

“[With] last year’s seniors, it was 61% [that] went on to a four year college, 11% [that] went onto a two year college or some other kind of further education, 3.5% entered the military, and 23% went onto the workforce based on what they told us,” Randall said.

BFA graduation requirements are mandatory to give students a general basis of what skills they will need in future events.

“I think BFA graduation requirements are well designed to give students sort of the broad general education, without having so many things required that students can’t choose areas that [are] of high interest. Covering that broad general education really, I think, is looking at what are the skills and experiences and learning that students need to have to be college or career ready,” Randall said.

Schools need to have graduation requirements, but BFA tries to not have an excessive amount of requirements so students can choose classes they’d like to take.  

“We are going to try and make our graduation requirements broad enough to give everyone the broadest range of choices as we can without limiting students so that they don’t have access to some of the higher interest things because they don’t have time for them,” Randall said.

Although a lot of people would agree that high school does prepare their students, this isn’t a universal feeling.

“No, it hasn’t because of the strict schedule we have here is nothing like a college schedule, because teachers do not really care if we go to classes. Furthermore the workload we get here is much less than what we’d get in college,” Andrew Billings (‘18) said.

The amount of work that college students get compared to high school students, is not in any sense equal at all.

“Ultimately what they want to know is are you as a student prepared for the level of course work that going to be required of you,” Randall said.

If students aren’t getting the right work load in high school, how can they be prepared for college?

According to mycollegeguide; “The college workload is often heavier than the high school workload: more preparation outside of class more studying more books more papers and more (or at least more intensive) tests. Don’t expect to be reminded of due dates.”

With education being one of the most valuable tools in this day and age, it is important to be getting the right preparation for college.

“The only preparation this school has given us for the college is walking between buildings in the cold, which would be like walking to class in college,” Billings said.