The Pros and Cons of Summer School for Teenagers

Is your teenager contemplating going to summer school?

Just thinking back to my daughter’s summer school experience  gives me the chills. When Caitlin was in high school she took an honor’s chemistry class during the summer. She spent about 12 hours a day studying chemistry. It was hellish, but then the girls’ high school she attended was an academic meat grinder.

After she (barely) survived the class, I ran into a high school chemistry chair at a reunion and she told me that teenage brains aren’t developed enough to absorb a year’s worth of chemistry concepts in just six weeks.

That’s why I’m a little anxious about my son, who is a high school junior, who wants to take calculus over the summer at a community college. He’s already done well with two math classes at the C.C. so I think he’ll be okay. I hope.

If you’re exploring the possibility of summer school, U.S. News & World Report recently published a piece on the pros and cons.  It’s geared toward college students, but I’d suggest it’s applicable for high schoolers as well.

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  1. Someday i will agree with you… im only in 3rd grade but i am here to say that summer homework and summer school sucks! BUT maybe theres a good side to this thing. I hope you like my name!

  2. I think that having your child go to summer school IS stressful. unless they volunteer to go, you shouldn;t force thetm to go. I personally am a student and I agree that you can’t take in everything and so maybe they could extend the amout of time in grade school before going to college.

  3. I think it’s a fine idea. I think the thing to focus on is having your son be prepared for college. Getting a top grade would be great, but knowing the material well is even better. If he takes a precalculus class this summer he should be more prepared for college math.

  4. My son is a HS junior but may sign up for summer school for a different reason–he got a poor grade in precalculus and taking it again may show colleges that he can handle the work. Good idea? Bad idea?