Graduating high school early


Sabrina Brons

PHS students head towards the main staircase during the busy 5 minute passing period.

Katarina Pfauter, Reporter

Walking into the same school day after day, glancing at familiar faces, acknowledging that you are much different than them. Whether it be you are more mature, you already have plans for the future, or you may just have a different situation at home.

Graduating early can be an option for almost every junior or senior at Palatine High School. Starting the process begins with going to your red, white, or grey team counselor.

Shannon O’Brien, a counselor on the white student assistance team, is also the counselor you go to if you seek help with anything in relation to College. O’Brien experienced speaking with early graduates before. “Speak to your counselor before junior year so that you guys can come up with a plan,” O’Brien adds. “If you come up with a plan that you and your counselor agree upon, then follow through with graduating early.”

When graduating early at Palatine High School, you need to make sure your requirements are completed; Drivers Education, Health, and Life Hours. Also, students need to make sure they have plans for after high school.

“I do not recommend graduating early if a student is not going to continue their education right away”, O’Brien continues. “Students tend to have a hard time going back into a learning environment when they discontinue education for a few months.”

Students who also have a rough life at home or feel more mature than their peers in high school, also fit the criteria for graduating early. SeattlePi, a website speaking about certain research based topics, often discusses graduating early. “Graduating early is typically better for who outgrown their high school in more ways than one.”

However, it may be you are mature enough to handle living life on your own without someone there for you one-hundred percent of the time, there are other factors you need to take into account.

O’Brien also said, “Students need to be prepared for the real world since no one will be holding your hand guiding you, just like they do in high school.”

Even as a junior, knowing you will not be able to graduate a year early, you still have options.

Janie Todd is a senior at Palatine High School and is currently in her last semester of her high school career; she graduates January 16’. “I wanted to graduate early because I felt like high school was not for me,” Todd said. “I wanted to start working and get college out of the way.”

Todd plans on studying English and Education at McHenry County College.

Graduating early will most likely not be easy, so taking as much advice as possible can be the best way to stay on track. “Stay focused and surround yourself with supportive people,” Todd continues, “I got off track last year and I wish I would have focused more to get done earlier.”