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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Carleton chapter.

“I hate school” is a sentence said by nearly every stressed out, over worked, exhausted, and bored person to ever make their way through the education system. And on the other side of those three words is the eye roll of an offended teacher, the lecture from a parent, or an echoed sentiment from a fellow school-hater.

For the longest time, my hate for school was followed with the reminder that “hate is a strong word”. And yes, yes it is, which is exactly why it resonates so well with my feelings. What I never understood is why hating school was so policed; and well, hated. Why it was such a big deal to get students to not hate school rather than asking them why they did?

Let me help you out, because if you did ask you’d get answers like: my class is boring, my teacher/professor is confusing, the work load is too much, it starts too early, its crazy expensive, it stresses me out, it feels like jail. And of course that’s just a few.

I’ll never forget in middle school during recess, a friend and I were walking around when she turned to me and said, “You know, school is just like jail.” I quickly replied with a confused, “Huh? How?” She then explained how the structure of school—recess, lunch, classes, even how we walked in lines—were all so similar to how a jail is run. How we can’t challenge our teachers, or any other authority and we had to learn in the ways they wanted us to. She even pointed out how the building itself looked like a jail.

“All it’s missing is that wire,” she said. The barbed wire, used to keep prisoners from escaping, was what she was referring to. I’ve never seen school the same since.

But post-secondary, that was suppose to be our Promise Land. Bye bye jail. It’s a place were, yes you’d have to work harder, but at least you could learn about what you were interested in. It was painted as an oasis of academic freedom, where at the end of it all you get a special paper that serves as a ticket to success.

And if you didn’t buy into that whole “freedom” bit, it was made clear that you couldn’t be anything without that degree…so you had to go anyways. For some, that ends up being a complete pile of propaganda.

One day after class I called my mom to tell her I wanted to drop out of university. Now, I wasn’t serious but I was frustrated. My hate for school was bubbling over and needed to rant. Why I would call my pro-school “try your very best for academic success” mom, to be the audience of my rant? I have no clue. The beginning of our conversation went a little something like this:

“Mom, I want to drop out”

“Ok, but where are you gonna live?”

I was quickly reminded of her stance on school. Though I could see her letting me move back home if I did drop out, I wasn’t going to take the risk of not taking her seriously. Regardless, I was too upset to roll over and believed I had the perfect case to why I was justified in hating school. I wanted her to see that I was angry, miserable, and stressed out.

My mom kept trying to reason with me, inputting the logic behind why dropping out was not an option (for her daughter at least). I kept saying, “I’m just ranting.” To which she replied, “I know but we have to land this plane somehow.”

And behind words I can’t remember, she did say, “Simone, you need to figure out what you want. You’re going to take classes you don’t like. It’ll feel like they have nothing to do with your program but you’ll have to take them. But you have to find out what you want to get out of your classes, out of school.”

Despite her food for thought and her painting a clear “big picture” situation, I left that conversation still hating school. And weeks later I still hate it.

It’s rough out here. Whether you’re learning time tables and can’t seem to figure it out or your math has letters in it now and you’re still lost. Or hated those “All About Me” assignments from elementary school, but now you’re wishing for them instead of essays that are just too long.

School often shares a complicated relationship with its students. As at times asking more of us then what it gives us in return. Testing our love and dedication to the parts we actually do enjoy. Or taking us away from the things we used to make time for. Promising that it will all be worth it but leaves us wondering how much more we have to give.

The cherry on top is that some of us are asking the question, “What’s the point?”

So maybe you call your mom, or whoever else, to give your “I hate school” rant or have a complete breakdown of any kind. And maybe they sound like my dad and say it’s just about finishing. Or my older sister who texted “Welcome to the scam of post secondary education”. Or my mom, who gets you to think about what you’re doing it all for.

So to all the people out there who have ever had a hate relationship with school, it’s okay. Because if school was a person, no one would blame you.

Simone R. Brown is the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Director at the Her Campus at Carleton University chapter. She is responsible for ensuring the Carleton chapter is as intersectional and socially responsive as possible, regarding the stories published and promoted as well as the experience of writers, readers and followers. As a writer, Simone covers her own Black girl experience and music reviews. Beyond Her Campus, Simone is a freelance visual artist and has been doing so for four year now. She’s the host of a limited series podcast “Women & of Colour”. She is currently in her second year at Carleton University studying Journalism and Human Rights & Social Justice. Simone’s interest span various subjects, being a lover of basketball, a Marvel fan, and somewhat of a hip-hop fanatic who appreciates all music. On her free time you can find Simone browsing through record stores. When not looking to grow her record and CD collection, she listens to podcasts ranging from True Crime to social issues and basketball commentary to Sunday sermons. Simone enjoys reading authors of feminist and racial theories. However, nothing beats watching movies with friends and family.