Everyone has different experiences growing up, obviously. Most of us, however, can say we've at least gone most of the way through high school.
One thing I saw recently on Reddit (or was it Imgur, and is there any difference...?) was someone saying “Am I the only person who thinks graduating high school is an expectation, not an achievement?” presumably in response to some other person's image or post. Clearly, this person thinks “celebration” of graduating high school is unwarranted.
But, as always, I'm going to be the buzz-kill, slaughtering everyone's unbridled joy at mocking and dimunitizing people younger than they are. Oh, I'm so sorry.
Leaving aside the obvious fact that not everyone graduates high school – for various, unavoidable reasons, such as poverty, a need to work, family situations, and the like, and for such disadvantaged people graduation is an achievement, you cockheads – there's something really offensive about this attitude.
This irks me, admittedly, because of a move made when I was in high school to make graduation from twelfth grade compulsory, unless you move on to further approved education, such as government sponsored apprenticeships and the like. Basically, it trapped you in the education system until you were 17+.
But all it did was slam the jail doors shut in the face of all the kids who wanted to leave – they were gaining nothing from this continued farce of an education, and worse, the kids who wanted to continue and press on into tertiary study were now going to be forced to co-habit the school with the same lazy, disruptive fuckwagons who used to be gone for those last two, critical years of study.
It's not necessary to press on into the final years of high school, not in this country. It never has been. Many people got along fine without them, because they were more geared towards preparation for higher learning. Much of school is flat out time-wasting, and nobody can deny it (trigonometry being taught to 13 year olds, for one), and moreso if you simply don't want to remain at school when you're at working age. Isn't it more important to increase the quality of the education, so we don't have 15 year olds leaving when they're scarcely literate, than to increase the duration of what is clearly not working to begin with? You've just trapped the serious kids who want to move onto university in the same room as the dead-weight morons who don't want to be there and are just killing time. More of the same poison won't cure our education system.
So, no, graduating high school is not an “expectation” - or it shouldn't be. As I already said, even now you can always leave school and opt for traineeships or alternative education. So why would you expect someone to keep going with something they don't want to do, and isn't helping them achieve their career/education goals? Would you disregard a job applicant if he didn't finish high school because instead he was busy getting relevant job experience and industry qualifications? It shows there's something seriously wrong with you when you prioritize high school over that.
Perhaps the most annoying thing about this attitude, though, is that it's always followed up with quips like this:
“Why do teenagers need a gap year after school anyway? They haven't DONE anything!”
“Yeah, congratulations, you're only living in the easiest part of your life! Hah!”
“Pfft, right, like high school is hard.”
Good points, blowjobs, let's take a look here.
First of all: high school was easily the worst part of my life to date. I'm sorry, but you're usually under more stress in school, due to performance pressure and disrespectful teachers/peers, than you are in the working world – which I've been part of for years now. Working a job, paying bills, and being unmolested in your spare time is actually quite easy. The only prerequisite is that you have a job, and plenty of jobs are less stressful than high school. As one meme put it, going to work after school can sometimes be basically about “sitting there and trying not to break anything.”
So, sorry, as an employed adult, the working world and being able to handle your own life is much less stressful and difficult than high school was. I love this! I'm happier now that I ever was as a minor! I can't wait to get a better paying job and move onto paying a mortgage! That's awesome!
If you had a good high school experience, and a supportive home environment, you likely have no clue what some kids are going through when they go to school, be it grade or high school. Teachers who are perfectly pleasant to other kids can decimate some kids' self-esteem and terrorize them. Discipline and classroom control techniques are cruel and blind*. Bullying is chronically misunderstood in our society, and parents are often the last people to know what their kids are going through. You can hardly blame some kids for trying to escape it without the pointless honor of “graduation” or for truanting. (Note: I understand this from way more perspectives than just about anyone who reads this, even/especially teachers, will. So shut up.)
As a side note, people forget what kids study in high school. If you're not a university graduate, you probably don't remember (and/or you slacked off badly in high school). After all, more kids graduate nowadays than in the past, so a commentator from the previous generation is more likely to have NOT graduated or pressed their education further. Yes, senior high school subjects are hard! The last two years of high school were easily tougher than the first year of university. They're used to weed out the weak, a dog-eat-dog battle royale of academia to see which of our children can go to universities with limited student places.
So when you crack on how stupid teenagers are, remember they could be going to school and solving mathematical quandaries your stupid arse would find unfathomable, while navigating a stressful social landscape that I'd sooner immolate myself than return to. If you haven't taken your study further, or graduated a long time ago, you'd likely be surprised if you read a current day high school textbook, because the subject matter isn't as simplistic as you think, and requires good study skills at which to excel. Also, guess what else is easier overall than high school because of more accommodating teachers, peers, schedules and freedom? University.
These kids are hardly touting what they believe to be an achievement, as if managing to eat breakfast without jamming a spoon in your eye is an achievement; they're celebrating this shit being over and done for, and that they can now move on with their lives. They're celebrating a milestone in their life, in the same way as people celebrate their 30th birthday – what, is living to a certain age an achievement? Get off your high horse, people.
- I've been meaning to cover this for some time. I'll get on it soon.
Addendum: I actually know two people who had to leave high school at 15 in order to work to support their families and themselves, because the government wouldn't afford them any support at all. I also know several who worked and studied simultaneously from 14 to graduation. This is another facet of the ignorance and arrogance of claiming that kids should be "expected" (read: forced) to finish high school. For some, it's just not an option, like I said above. For some, it's possible, but not the easy task these spoiled, big-mouthed, self-aggrandizing jerks tell themselves.
This presumption that everyone's high school life was easygoing, with dotting parents who threw wads of money at us while we attended a nice little crime-minimal school, is extremely frustrating. If this is your mental conception of high school life, then shut up; you don't know anything.