Having jobs in high school could have negative effects on students


Leah McNear

Leah McNear, Staff Writer


For years people have been getting jobs while in their teens, but can balancing work and education have detrimental effects?

According to the U.S. Census, one in four high schoolers sixteen and older have part-time jobs. Only one percent of students had full-time jobs.

High school is meant to challenge students to work hard. Academics take focus and certain years are tougher than others.

Working while being a high school student has multiple positive aspects. It teaches responsibility and prepares teenagers for the real world.

In that preparation it can also cause a decline in academic productivity and progress.

“Having a job has affected me worse academically because I’m always tired, but it helps me with time management,” sophomore Jonathan Demar said.

There is another aspect of teen life that may be affected by having a job. Balancing work, school and a social life is a challenge.

“[Having a job] allows me to do more because I have money, but it takes up a large amount of my time to spend with friends,” Demar said.

A part-time job as a teen can teach all kinds of valuable lessons. Students can earn professional experience along with an income. Some go as far as claiming it’s a right of passage.

On the negative side, causing distraction from school isn’t the only worry. When a child falls behind in classes due to work, it can lead to stress.

The stress can cause short-term anxiety and long-term stress hormone elevation can lead to future immune system degradation along with chronic anxiety and depression.   

Students who are planning to attend college can receive less financial aid if their earnings are too high, but it is rare that this happens.

People have also argued that working during school cuts into the student’s childhood, therefore shortening it by making them grow up faster.

Of course there can be family reasons for getting a job in your teens that are excluded from the debate. Supporting family is important and all households are in different situations where extra income is needed.

In this school,students have an option called work release. They can get out of school early to go to their job.

According to the handbook students on work release must leave at their scheduled time, which can only be during fourth block. They cannot return during the school day without checking in with the attendance office.

To qualify for work release a student must be a senior with all of their credits, the work release can count as an elective credit, if needed.

Previous generations seem used to starting work at a young age. Countless adults talk about cutting the neighbor’s grass or something of that nature for money. What needs to be realized though, is that the pressure on students has increased since then.