Taking Back High School

How can we lessen the stress of college admissions for high school students?

College Counseling Culture

For the last six months I and some like-minded colleagues have been discussing the ways we think the college admission process has overgrown the lives of our students in high school. We believe it has made privileged students more and more anxious and subject to extreme pressures that distort their lives and normal development. Underserved students, in contrast, are overwhelmed by what they don’t know. Either way, it has made too many inroads into their lives.

I recently spoke at the Michigan Association for College Admission Counseling on this topic. I critiqued the Coalition and the “Tide” document as examples of both that intrusion and the way colleges put all the pressure to “relax” and “ease up” on students instead of looking at their own policies and expectations, which cause the anxiety and pressure in the first place. In an earlier post I called this condition “Pre-Traumatic Stress Disorder” which ends up…

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