High School's Not Forever

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9780757302565: High School's Not Forever
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Your survival guide to the maze that is the maze that is the high school experience

With real-life stories from teens across the country - as well as high school "survivors" - this book paints a real picture of how teens like you feel about the struggles and triumphs of the daily grind and how they get through it.

If you ever feel like you're on the sidelines or that the pressure to perform, conform or maintain appearances gets to be too much, this is the book for you!

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About the Author:

Jane Bluestein, Ph.D., is the award-winning author of 21st Century Discipline, Being a Successful Teacher and Creating Emotionally Safe Schools. A former classroom teacher, crisis-intervention counselor and teacher training program coordinator, she heads Instructional Support Services, Inc., a consulting and resource firm in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

EVERYONE experiences high school differently. Some love it,some hate it, and some are just doing time. Here are some examples of how rules, restrictions and realities play out in high schools around the country. Take a good look and see if you recognize your own high school experience.

What I remember best about high school? Not fitting in. Having so-called friends I could never trust. Having a chip on my shoulder about a mile high. Not feeling visible except for all the wrong things, like being fat or not having the right clothes. Humiliation on a regular basis. Having people use me or avoid me. Having the people I needed support from simply tell me what they thought was best for me or how my behavior, grades or looks affected them. Having teachers I hated and teachers I loved, and feeling like I would have done anything for any adult who treated me with the least bit of dignity and respect for my intelligence. Counting days until graduation. Calculating daily, once I got accepted into the college of my choice, exactly how much or how well I had to do just to pass the classes I didn’t like. The glorious elation when they gave me that stupid little piece of paper. It says something like “diploma” on it, but for me it still reads, “Free at Last.”
—Beverly

Well, I despise today fairly vehemently, and it’s only 11 A.M. Isn’t that some sort of a record? Technically, it’s the first day of school, but it’s just assembly, registration and a bunch of papers from homeroom. Tomorrow classes begin. I’m feeling pretty down right now. I’ve come to the conclusion that no matter where you go, really, high school is quintessentially the same: It’s typical in all the same ways; it’s frustrating in all the same ways; it’s scary in all the same ways; it’s good in all the same ways . . . although not so much of the latter for me since I’ve been here. Yet at the same time, life can differ so much from one school to another. Don’t ask me how that works—I haven’t come close to figuring it out.

School’s gone from being a place of education to a place where competition and fighting for the top come before learning. We have to deal with the continual pressure to keep up the pace, stay in the game, be the best at all times, never settle for less than the ultimate. . . . It’s exhausting for a teen to always be fighting. Fighting grades, teachers, other people’s attitudes, society . . . the list just goes on.
—Katie, 18

I’ve been to three high schools in four years, and I’m tired. I’m tired of being new; I’m tired of never being surrounded by anyone of my caliber; I’m tired of “giving it a chance” and “making the best of the situation;” I’m tired of most people my age; I’m tired of this country; I’m definitely tired of being tired of all the above, and the worst part, actually caring. But I am, and I do, and I hate it. I’ve said it many times before, and damn it, I’m going to say it again. High school: Call me when it’s over. —Rachelle, 17

The summer before I started high school, a lot of people told me, “Oh, you’re just going to love it. It will be some of the best years of your life!” I didn’t really believe this, because, honestly, if you peak when you’re about sixteen, that’s pretty pathetic. I did think I’d have a good time, though. I thought that it would be just like junior high, except more kids, and kids that were four years older than me.

High school can be a blast for some kids. But if it sucks for you, you are not alone. I thought everybody in my school was a lot happier than I was. That really wasn’t true, but I didn’t know that at the time.
—Clare

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