Imagine a class of 20 students. By the time they finish fourth grade, 70% of those students have already left the school to go to another. Lots of students move schools. For more than 6.5 million students nationwide, being the new kid can be a frequent occurrence—and one that exacts a cost to their social and academic development and that of their classmates.
It is important to learn how students change when they move to a new school. Their academics are known to fail and mental stability decreases. Two freshman have opted to share their personal experiences regarding the topic of moving to a new school.
“I was afraid of changing schools. I went there knowing no one. I just had to prepare myself to start over.” – Ewelina Peszt
I didn’t live here for the majority of my life. For the most influential years of my life.
In middle school, I packed up my bags and headed over to a new school. We had bought a new house for my dad and his new wife to live in, along with my new step-brother. I didn’t know anyone there, which was a rough start for me considering how things used to be. I had my own group, an entourage, and I was at the top. It was this odd elementary school power that got to my head. I thought I was all that. I was cocky, for sure. People used to treat me like that and no one had ever come along to bring me back down to Earth. I knew things would be different, but I wasn’t prepared for the toll it would take on me.
I brought that same attitude and stride with me. People looked at me differently. No one laughed or mocked me. They just stared, which felt worse. I managed to creep into the background. I felt at home there, watching the world pass by. At home things were the same way. I isolated myself and became attached to the outside world, through internet videos and nightly news shows. This was my life now. The friends I made were just people who could accompany me, and needed me to accompany them. We were just people filling each other’s void. The only friends I had any connection to were outside of school, and they had been my friends before I moved. My grades maintained a solid B- average, something that would have been improved had someone been there to support me, considering I had all As beforehand. By the time the year was said and done, people liked me, but I didn’t have any real friends. Nothing felt legitimate, just a faux group of friends to act as a comfort blanket. Middle school progressed and I had friends. I was fun to be around and detached myself from the outside world. I became a part of that school.
Today when I think back on those lonely nights and cold days, my world becomes a living nightmare. Something truly terrifying to me, nothingness. The idea of having nothing or no one.
“They just stared, which felt worse.”
11% of students change schools at least once over the summer. The remaining 59% of students move schools at least once over 5 years. I bet you didn’t realize how many students change schools. Another student was able to show how changing schools affected him emotionally and psychologically. This next student decided to share story about moving. The move was small, but he was still changed greatly.
I was in 4th grade when I had to move to a new elementary school. My dad had been recently married and my step-mom and her children were going to be moving in. My step brother and sister were going to be going to a different school and my dad told me that I had the choice of staying at my old school or going to school with my step brother and sister. I chose to go to with them but it was a difficult choice considering that I would have to leave all my friends behind. The school I was moving to was around a two minute drive away from my old school but I still didn’t know anybody there.
When I got there I didn’t know anybody and I didn’t have any friends. A few weeks went by and there still wasn’t anybody I had to call a friend. It took a while before I finally fit in. It was a rough start but after a few weeks, I had a few friends. I had left behind all of my friends at my old school but I was starting to meet some new people. I was hanging out with a few people in my class but I still felt alone and I missed my old friends. It wouldn’t be until 6th grade when I would see them again. I felt so lonely without anyone I truly knew.
It was a rough adjustment, but I eventually settled in and finally had some friends. I was glad I was able to find some people to hang out with but for a lot of people in my situation, they don’t ever find their place. Many people can’t find any friends at a brand new school and they never fit in. They would always seen as an outcast because they don’t have any friends. I’m glad this didn’t happen to me but it’s too big of a problem in many schools.
“When life changes to be harder, change yourself to be stronger.” – Unknown
Moving schools can be life changing; it was for these two students. Their grades and mental stability has changed since they moved schools. They were able to show how hard moving schools truly is. Moving schools allows you to meet new people and make new friends, but it makes you leave people you never wanted to leave. To all those reading who might be in schooling, how are you going to react next time you see someone who just needs a friend? Someone who just wants to feel needed again.