Academic seminars essential for success

New scheduling has allowed for seminar to be held every day except for Wednesdays, however only seminars on Tuesdays and Thursdays are for academic time. Seminars on Mondays and Fridays are used to promote Railer pride and complete activities assigned by the counselors.

With responsibilities such as jobs and extracurricular activities, students may find it difficult to set aside extra time necessary for completing homework assignments. According to a survey conducted by the American Psychological Association, 45 percent of all teen students reported they were stressed by school pressures originating from homework.

Extracurricular activities have proven their importance when it comes to college applications. According to The College Board, colleges focus on extracurricular activities when looking through applications because they “reveal a lot about students in ways that grades and test scores can not”. As reported by the 2014 census, 57 percent of children ages six to 17 years old participate in at least one after school activity. That is nearly six out of ten students.

In addition to participating in extracurricular activities, many students also have jobs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2014, 22.3 percent of students held part-time jobs. Having a job in high school allows students to save up money for college. It also makes students more likely to find a job quickly later in life, considering most employers seek experienced employees. Federal labor laws state that high schoolers can only work 18 hours or less when school is in session, but 18 hours per week in addition to school can be difficult to manage.

To put the amount of homework high schoolers are given into perspective, the University of Phoenix conducted a national survey in 2014. Ninth through twelfth grade teachers reported assigning an average of three and a half hours of homework per week. While students have many classes per week, the hours can add up quickly. According to the survey, the weekly average of homework for high school students is 17.5 hours.

Increasing the amount of academic time during seminar could be quite beneficial to students. With only two 50 minute seminars dedicated to academic time this year, students lose valuable time that they had in years past to lessen their workloads and obtain critical help from teachers. Students are forced to squeeze in time to complete assignments between extracurriculars and part-time jobs.

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