Graduating early, preparing for education beyond high school

Jamiah Sanders, Staff Writer

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This year of high school is more than halfway over, but, for some seniors, they are close to the finish line draws nearer as students get ready to graduate high school in December.
Graduating early is a decision made junior year when the school counselors call in students for course selection. Some have decided to start their adult life ahead of their peers.
The number of students graduating early this year is thirty.
Before they do, the students first need to notify their counselor.
“There’s usually a form that we would pass to you guys at that time and that would just to make sure we have parent permission as well,” Laura Grygiel, one of the school counselors, said.
The counselor will then help to create a schedule that includes all classes one will need to fulfill the graduation requirements.
Students must accumulate twenty-one credits as well. The counselors call all juniors during their gym periods into the auditorium and talk about classes that are needed to obtain those credits. Graduating a semester early senior year requires students to take the rest of their required classes in one semester. This means taking two English classes, two gym classes, and a choice of two elective classes.
There are multiple reasons for wanting to graduate early.
“Sometimes students want to get a head start on college and so they look to transfer into college right away,” Grygiel said. It may be to help at home or to get through high school as quick as possible.
“Every person has their own reason,” Grygiel said.
“I’m graduating early so that I can work full-time and save money for college,” Deven Hattabaugh, senior, said.
Grygiel explained that those who do graduate a semester early have the option to participate in prom and the graduation ceremony in May, but it may be hard to get used to after having a whole five months off.
But early graduation is not for everyone.
“I see sometimes kids come in here and ask about it because they heard a friend is doing it or they’re frustrated in their current classes right now and they just want to get through,” Grygiel said. “I believe that it is the right thing for a select group of students and I think there’s some students that I really wish took some time and considered, listing out the pros and cons to make sure they’re making the right choice.”
“My advice to juniors who want to graduate early is to talk to your counselor,” Hattabaugh said. If it is a path to be taken, it may be a hard process to go through.

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