By: Faye Jones, Student Voices writer
This is becoming a much more common phrase being used by school children today-usually starting when they embark on their pathway through GCSEs. However, just because it is common, it does not mean that it is not terrifying to think that this is becoming norm.
The pressure now being put on students to do well in exams is becoming more than unreasonable. Now all you have to do is walk into any classroom in the UK and you will find a poor 13 year old going grey, and rocking in a corner because they can’t remember simultaneous equations.With my own personal experience, I remember being backed into a side room in order to have a panic attack before one of my exams, and being off school for a week to recover from stress. And it was not so long ago that a teaching union expressed a concern in the Scotsman that with the pressure being put on students from the new curriculum is being joined with an increased amount of self-harm of students. Now, not only are you guaranteed to get a grade at the end of exams, but you are also guaranteed sleep deprivation, depression and more anti-social changes to your behaviour. Who wouldn’t want that? Is it really any wonder that we are now seeing record numbers of students opting to go to apprenticeships and straight on to a full-time job afterwards. We are causing the mental, physical and emotional state of our children to completely deteriorate into nothing!
While, more and more teachers are going to conferences on the wellbeing of students, these new learnt skills are being left at the door of the classroom. Expectations of students now are becoming over-whelming with four page essays being due in two days for every subject, surely teachers should be able to realise that they are unrealistic and unhealthy for a lot of students. Considering the rising awareness of mental stability has grown, a lot of students are being pushed aside and the needs of the school (and individual teachers) coming first. How are we supposed to provide a positive, productive environment for students when they are starting school shattered from staying up till daft o’clock in the morning attempting to write an essay for first thing in the morning. A result of these unrealistic expectation often lead to unfinished and a low standard of work being submitted, this obviously then leads to a feeling of failure as they have been made to feel inadequate. Is there really any wonder school are facing an attendance problem? Who wants to go to a place that literally depresses you? I believe this is where the negative feelings towards the education system has came from-students feeling forgotten about and stupid thanks to the high expectations they are being forced to meet!
However, I would like to say that there is a big difference between challenging a student and torturing them! In my current school they set realistic deadlines depending on how challenging the task is for students. And I think this is down to teacher-student communication. Thankfully, I can say that if I feel I am struggling I can go to any teacher available to me and they can help. It has become apparent to me that this is considered a luxury! Teachers are forgetting that students- especially with the current changes to the education system- are under a lot of pressure from multiple areas and even a five minute consultation can actually alleviate what could be two-weeks worth of stress. Yet, many students are dismissed and forgotten about! Part of a teacher’s job is to protect the wellbeing of their students, but this isn’t happening due to paperwork taking precedence over the students, and it’s only when it is too late is anything done.
I think it is time for school’s to stop reading about how to help students with stress and start taking action. To start taking a realistic approach to how to set work and teach it! To realise that each individual students learns and work differently- therefore meaning they can feel different amounts of pressure in certain situations compared to each other- and they need to be able to adapt to each circumstance. Otherwise, I think we will see a extreme dip in the standards students are presenting. The worst thing is this problem can be easily tackled at early stages, yet it is ignored until it hits an extreme! Well, I say let’s not wait for the entirety of Year 12 to have a breakdown before action is taken! We should help school’s realise that migraine tablets shouldn’t be in our school bag every day! And that we shouldn’t resort to practically injecting caffeine in order to stay awake in class! I think it’s time we call for a massive change in schools!
Meet the author:
I am 16 and currently studying English Literature, English Language and Government and Politics at Liverpool College. I am extremely opinionated and enjoy a good debate! And I encourage anyone to try and prove me wrong. So far I have only lived in Liverpool but have huge aspirations to move elsewhere and travel! While, I do enjoy discussing multiple topics I have a passion for education and politics!
The Pressure Schools Put on Students is Becoming Ridiculous Reviewed by Admin on 18:15 Rating: