Deadlines Make Students (and Teachers?) Dead Inside

How We Don’t Consider the Stress that Teachers Undergo During Finals

Melina Scott, Head Writer

Every high schooler is united under immense amounts of hate for two things: cafeteria food and, more significantly, finals. Finals are the bane of most of our existence, a stress causing week from hell. Scantrons and dreaded essay questions mark the death of students in schools across the country, and impending doom awaits us when we (or if we have the bravery to) check PowerSchool. But students might not be the only ones that finals are stressful for. We’re often so caught up in studying for our different tests that we rarely consider how the teachers of the school react to such a horrendous time during the school year. Teachers, after all, have to create tests and make sure that they’re fathomable possible, even if it may not seem like it to the students sometimes.

Before talking to the teachers that I did, I had an expectation in mind that looked a lot like the paragraph above this one, except in some sort of teacher form. I was slightly wrong. In fact, most of the teachers I talked too didn’t seem stressed about finals much at all, or if they did they certainly didn’t show it. Mr. Pogreba, one of the more known-to-be-stressed teachers of the school, actually said, “I’m a bad person to ask because stressfuls aren’t final for me.” No, that’s not a typo. Hence why its mentioned that, if they are stressed about semester tests, they seem to do their best not to let on about it. Pogreba went on to say, “I don’t see the value in making finals stressful for students, so they aren’t very stressful for me.”  

Ms. Sampson had a slightly more stressed viewpoint on the subject. She believes that, “There should be a little stress with it for both students and teachers.” She went on to say that the most stressful part for her is fitting all of the subject material into one test, and making sure that that test can be feasibly accomplished in the allotted time given during finals week. Thus, mostly preparation is what many teachers including Ms. Sampson find stressful. This is obviously different for every class and type of test, and perhaps why some classes are taking a less-scantron based approach. Especially in classes that are less structure based, like English or some of the Arts, multiple choice and essay questions aren’t necessarily the most effective learning tool.

Many other teachers that I talked to shared similar opinions of Ms. Sampson and Mr. Pogreba, either that finals weren’t very stressful at all or that the stress was mostly in the preparation, which can also be true for students to some degree. So, maybe the un-hype around teachers being stressed is actually justified; according to several educators (at least from Helena High) finals really aren’t that bad.


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