Hi Freshmen, Welcome to High School


It’s a new school year and nearly one thousand new faces are starting the journey that is freshman year. Since coming straight from middle school, these ninth graders have a lot to adjust to and many new challenges to face.

“Atascocita is so big that [freshmen] are often overwhelmed with the size of it and the students that come with it,” Gold 3 counselor Ruth White said. “They have trouble adjusting to their classes. The comment that I hear quite often is ‘It’s a lot harder in high school than it was in middle school.'”

With more than three thousand students, a large campus is required to accommodate everyone, including staff and faculty members. This, however, can be intimidating to the newcomers, who come from relatively smaller (in both size and amount of people) middle schools. It is common for them to get lost and feel uncomfortable while walking down the crowded hallways for the first time.

“Time management is a big issue for us. We really don’t know how to balance things out,” freshman Jordan Honeycutt said. “Usually in middle school, we would just now be starting work. Now [in high school], we started to do work the first week of school.”

Once school starts, students are bombarded with homework, club meetings, after school practice and more. This is often challenging to handle for freshmen who are still adapting to a new environment.

“I just see the upperclassmen as other people in the school,” freshman Luis Medina III said. “They mind their own business. They’re regular people.”

Though there is a difference in age and maturity level between freshmen and upperclassmen, respect takes on a big part in their relationship. All students, no matter the grade level, attend school to get an education, and that matters more than any of the differences between them.

“The thing I’m looking forward to the most in high school is meeting new people and making new friends,” freshman Emely Ramirez said. “At lunch, you have to be sitting with friends. You have to figure that out or you’re just going to be sitting there.”

In a large school, there are many opportunities to make new friends. However, there is also an unnecessary pressure to have or be seen with a lot of friends, especially during lunch. This can be especially hard for ninth graders, who are no longer seeing the people and friends they used to see every day in middle school.

High school is different than middle school, and this might be difficult for them to realize and deal with in the beginning. As the year progresses, and they gain more experience, it will become much easier. They maybe might even learn to enjoy it.