Be Aware of Self Care


Mark Enriquez, Staff Writer

A new school year is always unique for each student at Gunderson. For some, it marks a fresh beginning at high school. For others, it’s the end of a long, four-year grind and the start of independent adult life. Regardless of what stage students are at, each of them tries to make the most of what they have.

For freshmen, the transition to high school from middle school has never been easier. A recent California law passed, pushing back high school start times to much later in the morning at 8:30 AM. That same law says that students in middle school start no sooner in the day than 8 AM. 30 minutes may not seem like a lot, but it goes a long way in providing students extra leeway during their morning prep.

“I’ve adjusted to going to high school pretty fast,” Freshman Landon Koutz said. “It’s a lot easier to manage my daily routine due to school starting later than in middle school. I do like school starting later as it’s easier for me to get ready.”

The current setup for school start times is very convenient for Gunderson families because they won’t be as pressed for time to drop off students. The 30-minute difference between middle school and high school changes little for those already used to the clock.

“I don’t think I’ve really changed my habits coming to Gunderson,” Koutz said. “I still wake up at the same time and since my brother already goes here my parents didn’t need to accommodate my schedule.”

The switch from middle to high school isn’t all that different, and it comes as no surprise that new students are already used to having a structured routine similar to what they had the entire time. However, for seniors, their paths aren’t quite as laid out them. For seniors especially, life after graduation comes with its own freedom.

“I’m probably not going to college first thing after high school,” Senior Alexander Rapp said. “I plan on enlisting in the army, then banking on the G.I Bill to have [college] paid out for me.”

For seniors nearing the end of their high school lives, the idea of graduating next summer is something to look forward to. Being free from the clockwork schedule they’ve kept to for years adds a new spark in ambition. After having school shut down from COVID-19 their freshman year and having to attend school online their sophomore year, seniors will be glad to travel off the beaten path.

“I want to go out and see the world. I don’t want to be sitting on a desk in front of a computer anymore,” Rapp said. “I think I’ve had enough of that.”