Counterpoint: Do school pressures take away from summer fun?

Aaron Bialer, Copy Editor

School dominates our lives, seven hours a day, ten months a year.  Until summer vacation begins, we only have weekends and a few other brief breaks to actually relax.  So, why lose our only true break to stress over standardized tests, applications, and/or uninteresting summer programs?

A few in-school classes do require summer assignments and each student must complete a summer reading assignment each year; however, such assignments do not need to dominate summer life.  To avoid stressing out about these, students may finish them early or just chip away at them throughout the summer.  This will maximize summer relaxation time and limit the stress induced by summer homework.

“You have more time to do things, like going on vacations or hanging out with friends,” said junior Kahaf Bhuiyan.  “I mean you really don’t have to do much for school in the summer.”

Limiting work in the summer is vital for keeping stress levels low.  Many students suffer from high stress ten months a year and need some time to recuperate.  It is not uncommon for students to fall asleep in class due to severe sleep deprivation. Stress can have various negative effects on health, causing sleep deprivation or simply overexerting the body. Students need to relax in the summer to decompress and prepare themselves for the upcoming school year, which will definitely be challenging.

The minds of students are often plagued by the fear of standardized tests. It is beyond overwhelming to prepare for tests that can determine the course of one’s future.  Luckily, there is enough time and are enough test dates throughout the school year for students to get their SATs and ACTs out of the way.

Students should be able to plan their time accordingly, so as to not have to worry about studying for fall tests throughout the summer.

College applications are entirely different, as they come out in August.  Some students choose to begin college applications as soon as they come out, taking away from their summer relaxation.

While this may reduce stress at the beginning of the upcoming school year, it is almost always unnecessary. This is not to say that procrastination is a good thing, but to promote the fact that summer is meant as a time of relaxation rather than stress.

Summer programs are increasingly utilized to gain a step ahead in class or learn a new skill unrelated to high school education. There are many areas that are not focused on in a high school curriculum that can enrich student’s education. However, students should not attend programs in areas that do not interest them in order to prep for the college application process.  These programs should be chosen based on interest.

While these programs may cause some stress from time to time, the overall experience should be interesting or fun, rather than anxiety-inducing.

For example, those in research must complete a project over their summer before senior year.  While this may appear a stressful hassle, many choose to research something they are interested in and have fun with the project.

Summer can be used as an opportunity to get ahead, but the opportunity is often not worth the accompanying distress.

Students should only participate in those activities that they find enjoyable during the summer, as the other ten months are plagued by the stress of piles upon piles of homework and a multitude of difficult exams.

“Ball is life,” said junior Ben Pan.  “I don’t want to worry about school stuff over the summer.  I got to play basketball, so I got my SATs out of the way early.”

Students should be able to devote their precious free time to the activities that they enjoy.