By Aryana St. Marthe
Too many students are failing but, is it a choice or due to lack of motivation? It's understandable if students can’t make it to school to do their work but they can just go on google classroom to do the work. Some students are failing due to the lack of motivation. But is failing always a choice? For some people it is and for others it's not, some students just give up and stop caring while others are still trying to figure out how to make up work. Is it possible that staff are wasting their time with the students that aren’t trying while the kids that are aren’t getting all the help they actually need? There are many questions that can’t be answered directly because you never know which students are the ones trying and the ones that aren’t.
I interviewed two people, a student and a social worker so I can get both points of view on “Choice vs Motivation.” During my interview with an East High sophomore, she made it clear that students don’t choose to fail, they choose to give up and that leads to failing because sometimes everything can just be mentally draining. But social worker Ms. Gefell-Wofford wouldn’t use the word choice or motivation; she just believes that everyone has a different reason for everything. I asked the student and social worker “How can students (struggling with mental health) find the motivation to go to school?” The student believed that you have to change your environment and your mindset. She also added that she was still trying to figure it out herself. The social worker said that if you have people around you to support you to help you find it within yourself, but that motivation always comes from within yourself.
School administrators have a spreadsheet to help keep track of who’s on track to graduating and who’s not. I asked Ms. Gefell-Wofford her thoughts about it and she said, “It leads to a meaningful conversation and it helps to intervene.” I believe that the spreadsheet can help students and try to motivate themselves and can talk to social workers and counselors to help them.
To conclude, there are many ways to look at this. You can always believe that everyone has a choice or you can believe that sometimes they don’t have a choice and they just end up in situations and can’t (don’t know how) pull themselves out. Ms. Gefell-Wofford believes that motivation is the hardest thing you can help with because you can’t make no one feel motivated; they have to do that themselves.