Panthers Under Pressure


Staff Writer

Pinewood prides itself on being the difference – true of its atmosphere of freedom, creative expression, and life- long friendships, where teachers take it upon themselves to motivate students to be the best individuals they can be. But despite all of the help Pinewood offers along the way, its high academic standards and pressure hardly deviate from the rest of the Silicon Valley’s hyper-competitive high school culture.

This pressure could be external or internal, meaning it could come from one’s own drive to do well, or it could be the result of an outside factor, such as parents or peers. Upon further investigation, it became evident in multiple surveys that when it comes to academic pressure, a pattern is consistently followed: we, as a student body, tend to amplify our level of stress when we are surrounded by our peers who are also stressed. In an interview, a junior who wished to remain anonymous gave insight into the world of academic pressure for the students of Pinewood.

“There is definitely a fair amount of stress that is health … but the amount of stress that people say they are under probably isn’t the truth. As a whole, we are likely blowing it way out of proportion.”

Students are obviously inclined to surround themselves with their closest friends. After all, given the small school size, the people who attend this school are extremely close with one another, simply because of the tight circle that is maintained. But what happens when these closest friends are constantly stressed? This does not bode well for the students involved. The interviewee explained how students commonly stress each other out.

“I know people here are under pressure, but students can stress each other out way more than necessary.”

In an ideal academic scenario, it is in one’s best interest to focus on the task at hand that they are responsible with completing, rather than letting other people’s academic anxieties smudge the individual’s lens of scholastic importance. In other words, students should take a deep breath and keep moving forward. Grades will come and go, but maintaining a healthy mindset should be a top priority.