Compensation conversation

Highschoolers that have a job deserve an extended deadline for their schoolwork

Many+students+work+through+local+businesses%2C+a+large+portion+in+customer+service+or+retail.+%E2%80%9CIve+been+working+in+customer+service+for+over+a+year+now%2C+and+I+definitely+think+students+need+a+break+sometimes%2C%E2%80%9D+senior+Kendall+Culpert+said.+%E2%80%9CThere+have+been+times+Ive+felt+really+stressed+because+of+everything+going+on+in+my+life%2C+between+homework%2C+work%2C+and+my+other+activities+%5Bsports%2C+hobbies%2C+school+clubs%5D.%E2%80%9D

Many students work through local businesses, a large portion in customer service or retail. “I’ve been working in customer service for over a year now, and I definitely think students need a break sometimes,” senior Kendall Culpert said. “There have been times I’ve felt really stressed because of everything going on in my life, between homework, work, and my other activities [sports, hobbies, school clubs].”

Lauren Schwarz, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Coming home late after working a long shift and facing piles of homework sounds like a nightmare, but it is a reality for many.

High schoolers, especially seniors, are typically encouraged to get a job before they become an adult. Being able to make their own money, take on a new responsibility in life, and gain experience are all encouraging reasons to get a job, but at what cost?

“Many undergraduate students ages 16 to 64 are employed at the same time they are enrolled in school. In 2020, the percentage of employed undergraduate students was higher among part-time students, at 74 percent, than among full-time students, at 40 percent,” according to nces.ed.gov.

Depending on the job a student may take, the needed hours can potentially be invasive to their routine and taxing on their physical and mental health. Many students also take on advanced classes and extracurricular classes, adding a job into the mix may only stress them out even more.

“With work, school, activities and friends all demanding attention, many students struggle with balancing and prioritizing the different areas of their lives,” according to mhanational.org

Balancing everything at once may be overwhelming and students need the option of a break. Teachers should automatically be able to extend due dates and deadlines on schoolwork if requested. 

While some teachers may be understanding that students have jobs outside of class and honor giving them extra time, others don’t believe in an extension. Students should not be penalized for choosing to work a job with piles of work, they should instead be praised for going into the workforce at such a young age.

As the years progress, high schoolers are adding more and more to their workload. “Students at high schools are taking on average four Advanced Placement classes along with intensive extracurriculars. Nearly half (49 percent) of the 128 surveyed students reported feeling a great deal of stress on a daily basis. Many factors contribute to this trend, including enormous workloads brought about by the school curriculum, working, as well a constant need to be competitive for colleges,” according to leadership.acsa.org

Some may argue that the choice to work is optional, but that is not the case for everybody. Students may be working in a family business, working to pursue a field right out of high school, or trying to help make ends meet.

There deserves to be further conversation and recognition of this ongoing problem. Students should begin to express their concerns and beliefs to the principal, or even the school board, on behalf of the betterment of their peers. No matter the situation, students deserve compensation and an option to take extra time if they need it.