Reflecting on High School

Jessica MarThe last six years of my academic life were hard. They really were. I attended Boston Latin School in Boston, MA. BLS is one of the three prestigious exam schools in the Boston area and sixth graders from different elementary schools in the Boston Public School system have to take a test to get in. The top 500 students are selected to attend BLS, the top 700 are invited to attend Boston Latin Academy, and the last 1100 or so students are able to go to the John D. O’Bryant School. I was very excited when I was accepted because my sister was attending BLS at the time and she seemed to enjoy it a lot. She was successful in her high school studies and I wanted to achieve that same level of accomplishment.

When I entered BLS in the seventh grade, I had to learn to adjust to quite a lot. I wasn’t used to having to go to different rooms for my classes – in elementary school I had only one teacher that taught all the different academic subjects. I also wasn’t ready for the immense homework load – at BLS, students are required to take 7 classes a day, 45 minutes each. Two of those periods were studies for me in the seventh grade, so I had 5 different classes to do homework for each night. I never really had a lot of homework in elementary school, and so the amount of work was dreadful. It was also difficult to make close friends in the beginning because as I went from class to class, I wasn’t always with the same people. Boston Latin School was definitely new to me.

Gradually, as I started to progress throughout the year, I could see that I was learning how to balance the many different social, educational, and family-related obligations that I had. I figured out which subjects I was best at, and learned how to use my study time productively so I could free up my schedule after school. When I found this balance, I felt extremely satisfied and very motivated to keep working hard. But I can’t take all of the credit. My guidance counselor was very supportive! When I felt like I was in a tough spot, she would always be willing to help me. When I found myself struggling with school work, she offered to pair me up with a tutor. Thanks to the support I received at school, I was able to overcome many challenges early on, and in the end I really do feel like I had a successful and fulfilling Boston Latin School career.

I’m now getting ready to graduate from the school I’ve attended for the last six years. It’s crazy – I want to cry just thinking about it. I get really emotional when I think back on the past six years because I have made so many memories with my friends, and to think that now we’ve all grown up and aren’t going to see each other every day is a shock. I have always been accustomed to routines and having things stay consistent that it will be yet another cycle of transitions and adjustments when I go to college in the fall. Whatever life brings, I am ready to take them on with the life lessons I have already learned while at Boston Latin School. I will always remember my alma mater, and I will be attending college in the Boston area so I’ll be close to the place that helped me become the person I am today.