By Darius Davila | Staff Writer
The last year of a student’s high school experience often holds more privileges than those known to underclassmen. In planning their courses, seniors have the option to arrive at school later than 8:45 or leave school earlier than 4:05.
“I have senior early release, and personally, I think this early release is good, because you can go to work if you need to. You can go home, and it helps to get better grades,” senior Rochelle Crenshaw said.
Although senior early release provides much more free time for students, negatives do exist. Spending less time on-campus may not look good to colleges.
“Colleges would rather see classes on a senior’s schedule than senior early release, because they want to see that students are getting ready for college and excelling academically. One period may not be so bad, but three or more doesn’t look good,” Johnson counselor Rebecca Hudkins said.
Even though many seniors have early release, some are worried that it will impact their chances of college acceptance. Many have acted on that concern.
“I don’t have senior early release because all the classes I want to take have to do with music, and I want to be a music major, so taking them is essential,” senior Anne Hadley said. “I think if you have a full schedule, it shows that you’re more serious about your academics and extracurriculars; but I think it just matters what college you apply to, and your GPA.”
Speaking with college representatives may shed some light on the effects of senior early release. The University of Texas at San Antonio, for example, takes a somewhat relaxed stance on students who elect to commit time elsewhere.
“To be honest, we don’t look at senior early release or consider it, as long as you have good grades and you’re doing well in your classes,” UTSA representative Nicholas Hernandez said.
Though the fact remains that colleges smile upon an advanced courseload, UTSA is not alone in its sentiment.
“Senior early release is not something we frown upon, and it won’t affect a college accepting you as long as you have met all your high school requirements. Just maintain your GPA and class rank,” Texas State representative Jessica Medina said.