Sunday January 27, 2013
I HAVE dreamt of studying in an international school since Form One as I find such schools more creative and lively compared with government schools. I pleaded with my parents to let me go, but they said it was a waste of time and money.
Finally, they agreed that if I had straight As in my PMR, they would send me to my dream school.
I believed they would keep their promise. I studied hard just to achieve my goal of entering an international school.
Then, last year, I sucessfully scored straight As. I thought my dream would finally come true. But, alas, my parents broke their promise.
Iím having a hard and stressful life in my old school right now. I barely have friends here. My best friends are all either in international schools or have migrated to other countries. Everyday, not only am I being forced to deal with calculating and arrogant friends who take ďsorryĒ as ďno cureĒ, but I also have to deal with irresponsible teachers who barely even know how to teach, but then, load you with homework.
Itís only the second week of school, and Iím already feeling the pressure as I have 10 different types of homework to finish, not counting the tuitions which I have to go to. I canít imagine myself stumbling through the rest of my school days. I have spent the last three years studying just to earn a fun school life in an international school. But now all the previous hard work seems like a total waste. My parents promised they would send me to Australia to study if I can score straight As in my SPM, and asked me to continue working hard for another two years. But do you think Iíll believe them again?
Iím not a clever student and Form Four subjects really are difficult for me, especially History. So, how will it be possible for me to get another set of straight As?
I want to remember my school life. But now I hate it. Everything is so packed, dull and stressful. Thereís no fun at all, and I just keep on studying and studying. I have to memorise everything and my brain feels like itís going to explode. Thereís no laughter in my life because thereís nothing for me to be happy about.
What can I do to change this school life of mine? Why canít my parents keep their promises instead of demanding for more?
You say that you are not a good student and expecting another string of As is too much to ask. I think you forget that you worked very hard to get straights As in your PMR and that is not a sign of a weak student.
You also said that you worked hard for your parents. Is it fair to say that this was the only reason? Do you not get a sense of satisfaction in knowing that you did it, and that maybe you are capable of much more than you give yourself credit for?
From what you have written, it does seem wrong that your parents reneged on their promise. But, we cannot deduce anything because their part of the story is not available.
You may not be able to control the situation you are in but you are able to affect how you cope with it. So, you did not get what you wanted. You are understandably upset and disappointed.
But you canít continue moping around, harping on the fact that your parents did not deliver their promise and will not again in the future. There comes a point when you have to stop thinking about what could have or should have been, and start looking at things as they are.
You have a wonderful opportunity ahead of you. You have the option to shine. Yes, Form Four is a rude awakening after lower secondary. But being in an international school will not change that. Also, the nature of our education is such that you canít escape from having to memorise details. All schools will have their fair share of bad teachers. But, sometimes itís also about what you put in as well.
The subject load in higher secondary is more. All of a sudden you are expected to think differently. See it as a challenge which you have to overcome. Plan your days and you will have sufficient time for non-study activities. Even if you were in an international school, there would be people like those you described. Iím sure that not everyone in your current school is like that. You may have to look a little harder instead of the people nearest to you. You are bound to find at least one person with whom you share similarities. You can also continue your friendship with your friends in other schools.
If you want to make sure your parents keep to their promise of sending you abroad after secondary school, start talking to them more about it. Take them to education fairs and look at different schools. Get brochures; website addresses; talk to other people Ė surely they have friends whose children are studying abroad. Start planning with them and they would be more likely to put their words to action.
We have all been in situations which we donít like. We do have a choice, though, when it comes to responding to the situation. Itís up to you to act and make the best of it, and build memories from there.