Editorial: Scare Tactics Reply

June of last year, I was in the cafeteria with the rest of BSGE’s class of  ’11 and our parents and our teachers. We were at our middle years program (MYP) certificate ceremony, the “graduation” at the end of tenth grade. A few speeches were made, awards were handed out and then Ms. Johnson began giving us our MYP diplomas. Tension quickly flooded the room; it wasn’t clear who would be getting a diploma and who wouldn’t. There were gasps and tears when students noticed that their names had not been called. We all then suddenly realized that receiving the diploma—an accomplishment that we had earlier trivialized—actually meant a lot to us.
After the ceremony I was upset that my classmates had not been told that they weren’t receiving the diploma. I thought it was unnecessarily harsh, especially because many students had invited their parents. For those students it was embarrassing, heartbreaking and perhaps even traumatizing.
However, with the start of 11th grade I see that day in a whole new way. It triggered a revolution. My grade, always cheerful, intelligent and friendly, was notoriously lazy and indifferent to anything serious, but this year I see a true change. Most people came back from summer vacation, not only refreshed but also ready to rock this year. A whole new attitude has taken over and it spread like wildfire. It’s as if we all grew up last summer, realizing that it’s all no longer a joke. We’ve accepted the fact that our actions have consequences (like being embarrassed and disappointed when you don’t receive the MYP diploma), and finally acknowledged that the consequences affect us. I attribute our transformation to that morning; it scared and shocked us into caring.
It also came at the perfect time. We now have the inspiration and the drive to push for the IB diploma. I have a lot of faith in my new grade’s new attitude, we will make it.
Nevertheless, it was too harsh. I don’t think, however, the administration did it deliberately. It was just another case of miscommunication, one that shouldn’t happen again. In spite of this, I hope the effect never wears off and I hope BSGE finds a different way to render the same results from all of its students.

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