The AP Culture at AHS


Abby Choy, Staff Writer

The AP and Honors courses offered at AHS are classes that students often take for their colleges resumes. Some students take prestigious classes for the sake of having a hard class or because their parents force them to. This results in an unnecessary increase in the amount of stress placed on the students, which won’t contribute to their future.

Our school has an environment that encourages students to go beyond their limits and get out of their comfort zone in order to achieve greater accomplishments later in life. However, this can’t be accomplished if students take classes not out of interest or passion, but only so they can compare with their peers in a competition of glorified suffering. It’s notable when someone mentions that they’ve slept for only five hours the night before a test that someone else feels the need to chime in with how they only slept for four hours as if it’s something to be proud of. I don’t think I’ve seen a single person do this out of comfort, and no one leaves the conversation feeling better. Maybe it’s to fit in, but more likely than not, it’s a contest of who underwent the most hardships that night.

As a sophomore, whenever I hear someone ask another person if they’re in English Honors and they receive a reply of “No,” the immediate follow-up is “Why not?” The question isn’t asked out of curiosity, but confusion. It’s as if we look down on those who don’t scoop up every opportunity not to be “average”, not to stretch themselves thin for a subject that they don’t care about. We’re almost as demanding as some of our own parents who either want us to challenge ourselves for our own benefit or so that they can prove they are good parents. Our motivation is a bit lacking, which can lead to burnout early on, and thus lower grades.

Of course, this isn’t to say that you shouldn’t take an advanced class if you know you can take it on. After all, AHS does support you to challenge yourself and reach for the sky. It’s just that our environment here propagates a dangerous mindset: if you sign up for harder classes, you are doing better. Don’t take difficult classes because they’re difficult; take them because you actually want to and are willing to accept the challenge.

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