Second Semester Stress

By Maia Johnson

There are two full weeks left until the end of the school year, and students are in the midst of projects, standardized tests and, of course, dreaded finals. It’s the busiest time of the school year despite the fact that things are winding down. Several students complain that they are being given almost too much to handle all at once. “It’s kind of tough, kind of getting everything together, and it all comes at one time, all at once,” says senior Tajane Hartley.

“We just finished with AIR testing, and now we’re getting ready for another standardized test, MAP testing. We just finished a project in humanities, and we have another project and an essay coming up. We were also just assigned a final project for Spanish IV, and then we have finals for all of our other core classes. As one project goes away, another one pops up, so that’s stressful,” sophomore Isabel Cook describes of the things her different classes are keeping up with.

When asked about her stress levels, she answers: “My stress levels have gone up, because a lot of the teachers push a lot of their work to the end of the year and they know we’re stressed out and we’re done by the end of the year. And I think education-wise, it’s not as much about knowing the material and learning it, it’s just getting stuff done,” she adds.

The fact that everything is happening at once seems to be what’s ultimately stressing students out. High levels of stress often result in lack of sleep, which students tend to lack anyways because they’re up until 3:00 A.M. studying and/or working on projects.

There are also differing personal side effects, depending on the student. These include, but are not limited to, extreme irritability, social withdrawal, and even substance abuse. The effects of high stress levels can be thoroughly damaging to students, and the appropriate action to take according to students seems to be to space projects and finals out throughout the fourth quarter. What are other changes that could be made to accommodate student stress?

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