Is Early Graduation a Good Option for Students?

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Lindsay Reyes , Editor and Chief

A rising epidemic has struck the school, and the signs have grown more severe as May 30th draws closer. Symptoms include extreme procrastination, increased skipping of classes, unexplained tears, and persistent lethargy. This is a disease that every 12th grader at Herriman High has been diagnosed with: senioritis. The only known cure is graduation. As desperation to get out of high school grows more stifling, students find relief through early graduation. Are they doing the right thing by tying their credits up in a nice bow, a present left at the school’s door by the time graduation comes; or should they stick it out for the last few months?

Students who graduate early get a head-start on college. They can take college courses as a high school graduate, and by the time that fall semester rolls around, they’ll already have credits towards their bachelor’s degree. By finishing their gen-eds through community colleges, students will be able to save money when they finally transfer during the fall. However, they might not be prepared for the rigor of college classes. Without a summer break or even gap year, to prepare for higher education’s stressful environment students might feel overwhelmed, which could cause their grades to slip. Even if students are academically ready for college, they might not be mentally ready. The development of the frontal lobe leaves a lot of room for important decision making to go awry. A student’s maturity level might be suitable for high school, but not for the college campus.

Higher education is known for its many expenses. When students graduate early, they can use that time to work more hours and fill up their savings account before it’s inevitably drained once the semester starts. By earning more money, students can reduce financial stress for the future.

By leaving the school, students also leave behind the fun events and activities that came with being a high school student. School dances, sports, and musicals all become more difficult to attend when you’re no longer attending that school. It might become harder to get together with friends, and high school buddies start to grow distant. However, early graduation students will have college campus functions to look forward to.

The end of high school and beginning of college is a huge transition for teenagers, one that involves more than throwing graduation caps into the air. If real-life is the ocean, then graduation is stepping a toe into the water. Graduating with the right amount of credits, good grades, and a hunger for maturity is one of the best ways for students to pave their future with the least amount of speed bumps. Graduating early, depending on the student, could allow them time to better prepare themselves. The responsibility of early graduation rests on the student’s shoulders.