YUCK - Summer School!
Lots of teens have bad thoughts
when they here about summer school -
those students who were slackers and didn't pass their courses
get rounded up and shut in a building during the balmy summer
days when others are lying around the pool. Yes, lots of high
schools do have mandatory summer school for students who have
"under performed." But summer school can also mean attending
classes at a college, in programs students actually compete to
A Variety of Programs and Benefits
These days, there are summer schools
for just about every type of student, whether you'd like to work
on academic subjects or developing skills such as playing an instrument
Pursue Your Interests
Use a summer program to develop
a talent or interest in the arts, humanities, or the sciences.
Gain Experience Outside of the Classroom
Summer school programs often involve
a lot more hands-on learning than you'll find in your regular
classes. Many residential summer school programs include sports,
travel, and social activities in their curricula. Personal development
and leadership skills are also major themes.
Improve Your High School Transcript
Attending a challenging summer
school program can increase your chances of getting into a competitive
college. In fact, some summer school programs are as competitive
Try Your Hand at Real College Work
If you're craving more in-depth
study of a subject you're interested in, and high school classes
leave you wanting more, college-level classes may be the answer.
Or, if you simply want to explore a particular school, or experience
college classes, it's a great preview.
Most colleges welcome anyone who
wants to learn into their normal college-level classes. Of course,
they give priority to students who are enrolled full time, but
more often than not room is available. Call the colleges on your
wish list. Ask if they have a summer semester and get them to
send you a catalog.
If you are motivated and able,
it's also possible to enroll in college classes during your normal
school year. But make sure the extra workload won't interfere
with your high school work.
Private summer schools can be
expensive, but the good news is that Governors' Schools and similar
programs supported by state and federal education funding tend
to be less so -- some are even free of charge, and most offer
financial aid based on need.
Private summer schools, like the
program offered at Harvard, also offer a limited amount of financial
aid, so don't cross them off your list just because they carry
a hefty price tag.
Summer School Tips
When looking for a summer school
program, here are some important factors to consider:
* How much of the summer do you want to commit to school? Programs
range from five days to eight weeks.
* What do you want to get out of summer school? Do you want to
turbo charge your academics? Act in a play? Teach young children?
Learn how a political campaign is conducted? Polish up a second
language? Work with engineers in the computer industry?
* Where do you want to stay? Do you want a residential program
where you live in dorms with other students or would you prefer
to live at home, attending school only during the day?
* Can you get high-school (or college) credit for summer school
courses? Receiving credit depends both on the school where you
take the course and on your home school.
* How much can you spend on summer school? If the answer is nothing,
are free programs available in your state or school district?
Taking Time Off
Tips for College
College Essay &