Do High Schools Allow You to Take Classes You Want?

High school can be very stressful, especially with all the AP and honors classes, sports teams, jobs, and even clubs. Some of the classes that we take are mandatory, and we do not have a say in taking them, giving us less schedule space for taking classes we want such as fun or career-oriented classes. Most of the career-oriented classes are not even available to be taken until junior or senior year. Although there are opportunities to take online classes in high school, it is again, normally only available for juniors and seniors. Many students do not take the classes they want simply because it is not an honors or AP class, and they can not afford to lower their GPA. Some students have interesting opinions on this topic, so I decided to interview one student from each grade level to see the different perspectives on the topic of schools allowing them to take classes they want and if they enjoy the classes they are in.

 

Danica Grant, Freshman

Q: Do you like the classes you are in?

A: Yes, I like the people and teachers in my classes. I also like the way the teachers teach and how counselors help by putting me in the right classes.

Q: Do you think that our school allows you to take the classes you need?

A: Sort of, I think you get to take the majority of the classes you need. But, it is annoying that if you want to take some classes you have to take a prereq class first.

Q: Do you think that our school allows you to take the classes that you want?

A: No. Although there are options, you do not always get into the classes you want. I didn’t get into classes I want this year such as art class, which is the prereq class to the class I actually want to take. I got mainly my last choices for classes this year.

Q: Have you been able to take the classes you want so far?

A: No, I didn’t get into art class as I wanted, but I did get into Spanish three, which is fun.

Q: How do you feel about this?

A: Frustrated because some of the people that get put into the classes I want don’t even really want to be in that class. The classes also feel very limiting because there are only so many classes I can take.

 

Gillian Kepley, Sophomore

Q: Do you like the classes you are in?

A: Sort of. There are definitely aspects of all them that are enjoyable. Some of my classes are fun, but they are super challenging and stressful.

Q: Do you think that our school allows you to take the classes you need?

A: I think that our school allows me to take what the School Board thinks I need. I think that some of the classes are unnecessary, and there are some important classes that are not offered.

Q: Do you think that our school allows you to take the classes that you want?

A: No. I really want to take government classes, but you cannot take most of them until senior year. Some of the classes are pretty fun and useful though such as Foods!!

Q: Have you been able to take the classes you want so far?

A: I have been able to take some classes that I want, but in order to maintain a high GPA for college, I cannot always take the fun classes because they are not honors or AP.

Q: How do you feel about this?

A: It makes me feel sad because I feel like I’m missing out on fun classes just to get a higher GPA. Also most of the classes I take stress me out and won’t help me out in the future.

 

Sophie Anderson, Junior

Q: Do you like the classes you are in?

A: The classes I am in are challenging yet rewarding because I get the chance to learn new things. However, taking three AP’s at once can be very stressful and time-consuming. I enjoy having chorus during my day because it gives me a chance to use a different part of my brain and unwind between difficult classes.

Q: Do you think that our school allows you to take the classes you need?

A: Our school provides many classes that are needed. They offer several different options in each of the four subjects and a variety of electives. However, there are some courses that I wish our school had. For instance, many schools have an AP research/seminar class that gives students essential speaking and researching skills. I feel like this is an important skill needed in life.

Q: Do you think that our school allows you to take the classes that you want?

A: Overall, I have been able to find classes that I enjoy and want to take. I have enjoyed all the arts classes I have taken, but I feel like I am cramming all of my classes in and I’m not able to fit everything in.

Q: Have you been able to take the classes you want so far?

A: By eliminating easier classes with AP ones, I have found it hard to take lower stress and more enjoyable courses. Although I do feel like I’ve gotten to take a variety of arts classes, I missed out on CTE and business courses. It almost felt as if there wasn’t enough room in my schedule for everything, and I didn’t realize it until it was too late.

Q: How do you feel about this?

A: Sometimes I wish that there was more freedom in course selection because it allows students to be more creative and individualistic. I think it’s important to develop a strong base in each subject, but seeing as many students know what they want to pursue, they should be permitted to focus on classes that will better assist them in the future.

 

Juan Basanes, Senior

Q: Do you like the classes you are in?

A: Yes, because I have friends in my classes.

Q: Do you think that our school allows you to take the classes you need?

A: Yes, because as a senior the school counselors prioritize the senior class needs over the lower class since we are graduating soon.   

Q: Do you think that our school allows you to take the classes that you want?

A: Yes, because I have not had issues this year with getting classes I want, unlike previous years. I have had problems in years before; I got put in Agriscience sophomore year when it was my fifth preferred class. When I walked in the first day, I found out that it was not even a normal class; it was an elective.

Q: Have you been able to take the classes you want so far?

A: Mostly, because counselors have no problem with putting me in AP classes as well as band class because they are “staple” classes.
Q: How do you feel about this?

A: I feel great.

There are definitely some different opinions between different grade levels, but most of the students acknowledge that upperclassmen have priority and more options of classes to choose from. Some of these responses also show how students mainly do not get to take many of the classes they want. They also explain how everyone is so focused on maintaining a high GPA that they are not able to take the classes they want just because they are academic classes and how taking multiple AP classes gives them less space to take different classes. Some students even mentioned that some schools do not provide the same classes as other schools and leave out important classes. Regardless of not being able to take all the classes they want, these students have all agreed that they like their classes and that they are mainly enjoyable. Those were just some opinions from a few high school students; what do you think about high schools allowing students to take the classes they want? Do you agree with the other student’s opinions? Comment above to voice your opinion!!

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