Same School, Different Perceptions


Annie Carmona and Maya Friedman

Assignments fill up your inbox and grades are being published. Did you ever think that the long school days and the grading rules were a bit too much for young adults? A student here at Terra Linda High School phrases anonymously, “School has impacted me in a negative way, because when I’m at school I feel very discouraged and stressed with all the pressure I feel on me.”


From time to time, we can be very harsh on ourselves for not being the best we can be. That overwhelming feeling takes over when you receive a poor grade which might cause you to question your own worth. At times, we need to give ourselves some recognition and appreciation of those great moments when all our worries drift away. English teacher David Tows states that, “Teachers and students on campus don’t realize how hard it is to be a student. Every day, students show up and try their best, which should be celebrated.” 


Learning at school should not fill our days with anxiety, but in today’s society, you really can’t thrive long term in life without having a good education. A student anonymously states, “School makes me question my own worth in the sense that I’m constantly asking myself how certain lessons are going to prepare me for the real world and problems I will face.” Students have obligations aside from school, and teachers have become more understanding of that to accommodate the students’ needs. 


We asked students and teachers at Terra Linda about how school has impacted them, and how teachers view school impacting their students. A student responded,“School is a good experience until your grade drops from the slightest mistakes and the only way to get it back up is nearly impossible.” A teacher anonymously states that, “Lots of students use school as a job to be finished as quickly as possible rather than an experience to use as a guide to help benefit the future.” 


School is supposed to feel like an enjoyable environment since we are doing it for 188 day days in a school year. There are some students who really enjoy getting the work done and fulfilling their desire to educate themselves, but on the other hand there is a large portion of students that find it very enervating. “School can be overwhelming at times, but in a way I enjoy it because it allows me to socialize and distracts me from stressful situations.”


We spoke with one of Terra Linda’s mental health counselors, Ms. Button. She has been supporting teenagers for two years now. When she started in this work industry she knew how beneficial it was to have someone to talk to and be there for extra support.

Ms. Button continued, “When you feel that something is off, you just need to take a break and a day off of school to have a mental check in day to check in on yourself and make sure you’re doing okay. Mental health should be one of your first priorities.” 


We all need to know that we are supported and not alone, especially in an environment like school.  If you don’t feel comfortable opening up to someone, a few alternatives are playing board games and activities that will help you not only learn about yourself,  but help you realize that everyone needs a break once in a while 


Step back, reflect, and know you’re not alone.