How important really is the second semester?


Hayliana Shumac

High school students, and seniors in particular, still have plenty to work for in the second semester.

For many seniors and juniors the second half of the semester is everything.

Colleges will make their final decisions on who they want, and if its not you then you need to come up with a back-up plan fast. Some feel the need to not have back-up plans, but may not get accepted to their first school of choice.

Fifty-nine percent of US teens say that they will attend a 4-year college plan, but most won’t even make it in to college because of grades or just not getting accepted. Grades are more important than what most people believe, and this is why the second semester is very important. Danielle McNelis says” Colleges primarily look at the student’s transcript at the time of application, which include grades from 9th, 10th, and 11th grade.”

Focusing on having a back-up plan for college is a key role in making a plan for the future. There are so many more options than just college if you are worried about your grade point average and your SAT’s.

SAT’s are the big test score that colleges look at and you take it your spring of Junior year or fall of Senior year. The SAT’s show the strength and readiness you have for college.  Colleges compare you to other students much like when they are deciding who they want to pick for their sports team.

If colleges don’t get the transcripts from high schools for the second half of Senior year, they look into the end of Junior year and beginning of Senior year. For Juniors that don’t look into colleges because it is too early take that as a warning. They look at the GPA’s of your high school years.

For most juniors, the second semester is when they start looking at colleges and looking for scholarships. For seniors, on the other hand,  grades really do matter, contrary to popular opinion. Colleges look into your grades, your sports, and activities, all the things that could make you a good fit for the college, which means students must remain dialed in for the entire year.

“I think the reason students lose focus is because as students get closer to graduation and future goals and plans,” said Mrs. Dani McNelis, the high school guidance counselor.

At Bellwood-Antis, the second semester is also an important time for the student body in general, starting with tested grade levels.

Keystones this year are towards the end of May. At that time, tenth graders will be tested in both biology and ELA. Passing the Keystones is a graduation requirement, which makes the tests impactful for the students taking them.

Although the second half of the semester sounds like a lot of stress, there is some kind of fun to it. Easter break is coming up in April of 2022. Another thing to start looking forward to is the 2022 Poetry Slam hosted by English teacher Mr. Kerry Naylor and the CHS debates, where twelfth grade debate students present arguments in front of the student body.