Early graduation may not be for everyone, but it’s an option for some

Early graduation or career internship? What and what? What is that and how do I do it?

Well lucky for you, head counselor Kathleen Mahan shared what and how.

Early graduation does not meet everyone’s needs and not everyone qualifies. It even has its pros and cons.

A candidate for early graduation could be someone who has all their credits and is ready to move on and begin their next steps. Next steps could include the military, early college or simply because they are moving and don’t want to start a new high school for half a semester.

If you choose this path you can still come back in May and graduate with your class no matter where you moved.

What could possibly be bad about graduating early? More than you think actually. Mahan said based on feedback from students who chose to graduate early. You’re only young once and you may be missing out on senior events and making memories, because once they are gone they are gone and there is no turning back. No one wants to have any regrets. Another con is starting college early; it puts you off sequence. Meaning you are not the typical freshman and you may miss out on some financial aid and scholarship opportunities. Not to mention leaving your friends. You’re still a student for all purposes, and you still go through graduation in the end. But you will no longer have that day-to-day interaction with your friends, and bonding, which is sometimes kind of painful, because you aren’t around them as much.

Have you ever heard your parents talk about COE? It doesn’t exist anymore.

“What we have now is called career internship,” Mahan said. “We don’t really have COE anymore, I forget what that even stood for, Cooperative Education, I think, where, you know students would leave a half a day and go to work. Now we have a program called career internship, but it’s a class. It is tied to going to work, but there is also some online. And you can’t leave a half a day, you can only leave a block or two early, or for some kids who work super super late, then they can come in a block late. So it’s a little more restrictive then the old COE used to be that some of your parents were familiar with. So it’s not as helpful for some kids that really truly want to go for several blocks, and go to work.”

It’s not as cool as COE used to be, but still has its perks. No you cannot leave for a half a day but what you can do is leave a block or two early or come in a block late and career internship does hold credits.

But as always it has its cons too. If you a senior thinking about it, you’re spring boarding out of high school into something harder, called college, and they want to see that you’re doing the tough stuff, preparing your mind, and taking tougher classes, not slacking in that last senior semester to just leave school to work full time. It just depends on where you’re going next. You need to have a plan.

Still interested? Make sure you meet these requirements: You have all four of your English credits. Then you have to see a counselor, and there’s some paper work to fill out and then you have to write down your rationale, it then goes before a committee that consist of the principals and other counselors on it, and if it’s good enough reason/rationale and it makes sense and everybody’s supportive, then it gets signed off and then you start.

If you are interested for this next semester you’re a little late. Everything should have already been in the works. Every Tuesday there is a Student Assistance Team meeting, but the last meeting for this semester has already passed. So really, juniors start thinking…