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Spring Slump: The Outbreak of Senioritis

Seniors+way+before+the+Spring+Slump.+Original+Photo+by+Whitney+Moran
Seniors way before the Spring Slump. Original Photo by Whitney Moran

Seniors way before the Spring Slump. Original Photo by Whitney Moran

Seniors way before the Spring Slump. Original Photo by Whitney Moran

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Come February every year, there is an outbreak of the flu, and it seems, an outbreak of something even worse: Senioritis. The reoccurring battle every year between teachers and second semester seniors about school work, coming to class, and the over all care for grades and school.

As the end of the school year approaches, the countdown to get all the curriculum taught ticks faster, and the days before graduation seem longer and longer for seniors. Students feel overwhelmed and tired, and they claim that teachers don’t see this and continue to assign more work. Teachers say students are uninterested and distant, claiming students put assignments to the bottom of their priority list.

David Miles, an English teacher here at Air Academy teaches AP Lit (a senior class) and Honors World Literature, saw a change after Winter Break: “I have noticed a significant drop in student commitment to academic work among my seniors since this semester started in January. Conversely, my sophomores generally have maintained their focus and effort in class. I have noticed a corresponding decline in engagement in my senior classes.” 

This did not just fall for the English departments, it was all across the academic board. Elizabeth Schlichter, a science teacher, who has anatomy classes filled with predominately seniors, found the same apathy in her classes. When I asked about the presence of a lack of engagement in classes, she said “Absolutely!  It is a constant whine of “I don’t want to do this” or “I’ll do this later.”

Schlichter and Miles alike will not be rearranging their classes for  this aimless work, or a lack of work: “I have not really changed how I teach; however, I now occasionally assign pop quizzes on reading assignments to hold students accountable for keeping up with their work,” Miles responds. 

Schlichter won’t wait for students either, “I do not change how I teach.  We have material that we need to get through.  Just because the student wants to stop does not mean we are going to!”

Seniors are aware of their bad cases of ‘senioritis;” they all know why too.

“First Semester, I was super motivated to do my homework, but now that I’ve gotten into my colleges, I have not done my homework since January. When I go home, I sleep and do my homework the class period of,” says busy Senior Marie Cloonan.

Marie Cloonan wearing her Senior Class Color

Same goes for Max Raber, “I noticed a huge decline in my work ethic from first semester to second semester; something that is exponentially getting worse the closer we get to graduation. While 1 or 2 teachers may be assigning more work than last semester, my work load is relatively the same because of my class schedule. I don’t think it’s necessarily a lack of care that’s causing my senioritis because I care about being successful in school, but as graduation gets closer, and after being accepted to college it’s hard to hold on to that determination.” 

Seniors hanging on the first day of school. Original Photo by Whitney Moran

Ceara Wayne, however, disagrees, “I think certain teachers do pile more work on. And it’s a lot easier to not do work, second semester, especially for kids who are accepted to college and don’t see a point in studying for classes they won’t study in college.” 

Senior girls prior to catching senioritis. Original Photo by Whitney Moran

It seems all three seniors attribute the senioritis to their priorities being found elsewhere, “I don’t necessarily think it’s a lack of care but lack of motivation. I don’t think people wanna do bad in school they just don’t see the point when they have easy classes or classes they don’t have interest in,” Wayne says. 

Cloonan states, “I think it’s due to me wanting to put my effort into different things that matter more to me such as family and my vlog!” 

Our teachers are worried that we will not be prepared for whats to come in college, “I do not know what the solution to this problem is, but I am concerned about it as a teacher. I am afraid that seniors are developing poor habits as they prepare to head off to college, which undoubtedly will be far more rigorous and challenging than high school,” Miles remarks. 

Schlichter expressed her concern too, “They have the mentality that they already got into college.  I would hope that students realize they are not finished yet and have enough care to finish with their responsibilities.”

Spring Break is shy of two weeks away, from there only 7 weeks of school remaining before graduation, and the senioritis might just get worse. No promises of change to our dedicated teachers, but I know I am ready for May 17th.

 

Keep up with Marie Cloonan and her Vlogs on YouTube @mariecloonan

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1 Comment

One Response to “Spring Slump: The Outbreak of Senioritis”

  1. Brad Boyle on March 15th, 2018 5:29 pm

    Well said Mr. Miles and Ms. Schlichter! I echo their sentiments. Stay classy, class of 2018!

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Spring Slump: The Outbreak of Senioritis