Aug 28, 2013

Enraged by the Bell

Dear Ask A Punk -
The Summer is over already and I can't believe in a few days I have to go back to school. It is just miserable. My school sucks. and not just in the usual ways that public schools suck. It is cold all winter - like theres no heat at all and the food is probably better in prison. The teachers most of them you can tell they don't want to be there either, just get their paychecks and no one gives a shit - unless you ANYthing even slightly out of the ordinary from the other sheep and then suddenly everyone gives a shit, about meaningless bullshit. I'm starting my junior year too, so there's TWO MORE YEARS of this shit I have to get through. I can't stand it. How does anyone with any integrity survive this stuff? - punk HS.

Dear pHS -
 I'm guessing that a transfer out of your current school and into a different one (public, private or 'charter') is not a possibility? If not, at least you have one light at the end of the tunnel: Graduation Day. I know that probably doesn't sound like much of a silver lining, but it is more than your teachers can say. 

Full Disclosure: Both of my parents were teachers in public elementary schools so, if I have a little bit more compassion for your teachers than you think is deserved, my apologies. I can tell you one thing I know for sure - No teacher, not even the most burned-out, apathetic, doesn't-give-a-shit teacher started out that way. We're told we are still, in spite of ourselves, the "richest country in the world" if that is really true, then the condition of our public school system is a national disgrace. I grew up in a small town with decent enough schools and even its own High School... I graduated a loooong time ago... when I go back to my hometown and see how far they've declined is breaks my heart and enrages me. 

And that's just the tangible stuff...  The perception that no one else cares, and that things aren't going to get any better, well that weighs on the people who are there year in and year out, in ways that you can't imagine. Your teachers probably all remember better times for your school system. I'm almost willing to bet that the angriest douchebag of a teacher in your school is probably the one who, at some point, long ago, cared the most. 

And yes, I know NONE of that is your fault. I'm just saying try to have a little empathy. In the meantime, since I'm still assuming that transferring to a new school isn't an option, I have some other possible options.

First of all, what is your plan for after High School. Are you thinking about college? Specialized training? Joining the military? Working in the family business? What? How you answer that question matters.

If you're dreaming of escaping to college, then you had better do everything you can to get the best grades possible and find a few ways to get "involved" in your school that will look good on your college application, whether you enjoy doing any of it or not. Is it cynical to think that way? Yes it is, but if you want to go that route, you'll have to play that game. 

If you have other things in mind for that long stretch of years after high school, why not look into getting your GED? I know the laws vary from state to state, but at some point, you should be allowed to try passing the GED and escaping your living nightmare ahead of schedule. 

In the meantime: Endure.

Sorry if this answer is a bit generic, but really, the question is pretty generic and didn't tell me much about your personal situation. 

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