Opinion: The School Scheduling Process Is Terrible

As a senior who is about to graduate within a month’s time, I have begun to reminisce about my high school career. Despite all the late nights spent studying for those final exams and all the stereotypical high school drama, one experience always sticks out like a sore thumb. What I would truly like to address is the catastrophe of scheduling at MHS.

In my experience at MHS, the first day of the new school year, unfortunately, conjures up traumatic images of the hoards of students crowding the windows of the counseling office. Instead of enthusiastically greeting my friends after a long summer away, I somehow always spend my first day not even in the counseling office, but in the lines trying to attain an appointment. Every year, without fail, some part of my schedule has been screwed up.

While every new school year there is at least some trouble with scheduling, this year took the cake. Administrators were running around and giving mixed directions that contradicted each other. I had been transferred to three different lines before they sent everyone away. We were told to go to class, even if the class we were going to was clearly wrong. In the thirty minutes that I spent lined up that morning, not a single appointment was given out and the office door was firmly locked.

But there was one exception to the administrators’ and counselors’ usual unconcerned and apathetic helpfulness: parents. Parents had the power to bypass that locked door and turn any of their excuses and indifference into real results. If a student has trouble with their schedule or getting into a certain class, any teacher at MHS would tell them to have their parents call in.

It seems as if the parents are the only ones who can cut through the red tape of the office. While on the MHS website the counseling center claims to “serve the needs of our student body,” they seem to be more subservient to the parents.

On the same morning that first day of school, one administrator verified everything that I had already guessed. As I knocked on the locked office door, I was greeted with a brusque dismissal. “Do you have a parent with you?” she asked, “We’re only meeting with parents right now.” I was absolutely stunned as I was sent away. What could my parents say that I couldn’t say for myself? Did I need an adult to validate my words? In their eyes, I was simply an incompetent child.

As a challenge to the counseling office, there is an entire summer to fix the countless problems in scheduling classes for the next school year. As a challenge to the students who they claim to serve, speak with assertiveness and confidence in hopes that others will listen to what you have to say because your problems and your opinions matter. Make it harder for the administrators and counselors to look down on you and underestimate your competence and your abilities.

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