Paychecks for grades

Teachers and faculty are the only people who get paid to go to school. That’s just how it is, for now.

Liam Kirk, Staff Writer

A student holding an empty wallet.

A debate that often is brought among students is whether or not the information we learn in school will actually be used in real life situations as we get older. After high school is college, for some and work for others, and as you grow older, earning money becomes more and more of a priority. You need to start paying rent, bills, car payments, and other various expenses that need to be covered.

While this can seem quite overwhelming, the simple answer is to get a job and for many students, this will be your first job. This experience can be scary if you’re not prepared to work in a “workplace environment” and deal with the work-related stresses that are involved in maintaining a job.

Unemployed Sophomore Alex Licea Showing his empty wallet.

This made me begin thinking about how the school experience compares to the experience of having a job outside of school and whether or not schools are preparing schools for the workplace.

Genice Weathers, the Accelerated World History teacher explained that the answer is not simply a yes or no. She described how she thinks that the school system does establish a decent work ethic in most kids, mainly due to extracurricular activities, homework, and constantly studying, however, students don’t fully understand the importance of always giving your best in work. As for the students who don’t always try, they are already behind.

“There are days when as a student, you can kind of float, right? Whereas if you’re at your job and you float, somebody else has to pick up the slack for you. And that doesn’t happen at school,” she explained about how school life compares to work life.

Being given money at school doesn’t necessarily have to be a reward for hard work but also as a form of motivation. However, this tactic of giving students an incentive to work harder on their education “depends on the student,” Weather’s said. “Maybe it would encourage the lower half of the students who aren’t motivated…but the ones have already had intrinsic motivation…they’re already inspired.”

Lu, a Geometry and Pre-Calculus teacher had an opposing view on the school’s ability to prepare students for work outside of school and for a paycheck rather than a grade.

“At times we do [prepare students], but there are times where even I’ll tend to be a bit more [lenient].” Lu also continues to describe how he as a teacher has to look at a classroom and understand the different learning techniques every student needs to have to succeed which makes it difficult to push every student to their full potential.

He explained that schools do their best to promote success but “we need to push our students a little bit more” which is something “[the school] needs to spend more time on.” Lu continued by saying that most schools, mentioning Gunderson specifically, do a better job at preparing students not just academically but also socially because of the diversity and the excellent staff.