A and A+: Requirement for Success

May 5, 2008
By Julianna Klepacki, Stony Brook, NY

As a student at a well-known and respected high school, I have noticed that receiving A's and A+'s is no longer seen as an option for success; instead, receiving these grades is seen as a requirement for success.
High schools around Long Island have pressured their students to extreme points so that students are able to apply to the most competitive schools in the country. It is encouraged to participate in multiple clubs and sports, to receive only the best grades, and to enroll in only the toughest courses available. If students are always concentrating on their grades, when are they able to truly express who they are and experience all that their teenage years have to offer?
America has been a melting pot of all cultures for centuries; people with various skils and levels of intelligence have immigrated here from all over the world. If students are constantly being pressured by their school, parents, and peers to receive the best grades, they will miss out on a lot. This is not to say that I don't believe students should be the best they can be; I agree that students should try their best and put effort into their schoolwork, but I feel students should focus on what they really love and not necessarily strive to be the best at everything.

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