Out of the box thinking, success

Throughout high school, it’s typical for the average student to be taught that gaining certain academic achievements is the only thing that matters.

Obtaining the status of National Merit Scholar, Top 10%, or commended performance on TAKS seems to be all that teachers, administrators and other students talk about.

This puts a lot of pressure on students to do well, which can have good and bad outcomes.

While pressure can help a student try to do their best, it can also add an enormous amount of unneeded stress. We are taught we have to make straight A’s, earn a 2400 on our SAT and pass all of our TAKS tests with flying colors in order to get into college and be successful in life.

This is an unrealistic look at life outside of academia and high school.

While obtaining a high academic status may be noted in the application process, it is not the only thing colleges look for in a potential student.

Colleges want well-rounded students who are involved in volunteer work, extra curricular activities and other things on top of grades.

If we were not taught that a grade determines your future, we as students would be able to focus more on actually learning, instead of learning how to take different standardized tests.

In the professional world you do not have to take a test to determine your position in the work place and the majority of employers will never ask for your GPA or class rank.

To climb the corporate ladder, you will have to focus more problem solving and creative thinking versus how well you bubble in a scantron.

There are many students who do not preform well on tests and whole other subset that does well, but does so by writing answers on their hands or legs. With multiple choice testing, we are failing to see a students true understanding.

If we were to build on what students can do, rather than focus on what they can’t do, we would encourage inner growth and help them reach the top of their potential.

These tests and standards seem to hinder students more than they help them. By treating us one unit, we are being generalized, rather than personalized.

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