The start of school is approaching rapidly!As a youth, I see a lot of different opinions about school starting up once again. Some teens are eager to get back into a daily routine and go to school, while most teens are dreading the first day of school. You might wonder why teens nowadays complain so frequently about school. There are multiple reasons for the complaining, but I’d say that the most common complaint about school is that it can get pretty stressful with the balance between schoolwork, athletics, clubs, social life and other activities. Anyway, students have obtained their school schedule with all of their classes for this upcoming school year by now. They often compare their schedules with others through social media, texting, calling or just talking in person, and see if they have any classes in common with their friends and fellow classmates. I know that a lot of students nowadays (including myself) are major procrastinators; so during the month of August, there is a rush to complete all the summer work that was assigned months ago. We want to make the most out of the rest of our summer and put off thinking about school for as long as possible.

On another note, students often have goals and fears when going into the school year. I am going into my junior year in high school, so one of my fears of this school year is taking the ACT and thinking about college. The ACT is a lot of work and studying, and that just adds to the work load of school and extra activities I participate in during the school year. Also, college seems so far away and I don’t even want to think about it. In contrast, one of my hopes for this school year is to get good grades in some difficult classes. I am taking two AP courses this year and one honors course so I hope to get A’s and B’s in all three of those classes. I also run track and field during the spring, so one of my hopes for this year is to win Conference (the biggest track meet of the year; basically the climax of the season) with my track team. I have high expectations for this upcoming school year and I know it will be a lot of fun!

Youth workers, how does Emily’s perspective compare to that of your youth? Have you talked to the youth in your group about their fears and hopes for this new school year? What are you hearing from them?