When you’re younger it’s easy to think that school is a waste of time but as you grow older you begin realising that school is a melting pot of knowledge that is yours for the taking and will give you the best start in life – this is something that Year 10 student Casey-Lee Armstrong has realised.
Casey-Lee, who attends Katanning Senior High School in Western Australia, has found the motivation that she used to lack, resulting in her almost doubling her school attendance from 56 percent to 85 percent this year.
“I wanted to do better and prove to people that I wasn’t going down the wrong track and screw up my life. I wanted to become something and make not only my family proud but also myself,” says Casey-Lee.
Now that she is beginning to embrace her learning she is actually enjoying it.
“I absolutely love school, I love learning something new every day. I love the feeling of working hard for success. I feel I need to enjoy the rest of my high school years because once I get out into the real world that’s when the real struggle begins,” she says.
Aboriginal and Islander Education Officer (AIEO) at Katanning, Marrisa Willey, says that Casey’s amazing alteration from someone who had “no motivation, no hope or faith in myself” has not gone unnoticed.
“Casey’s transformation has been incredible and noticed by so many different staff members. It has always been noted that Casey is a very bright, intelligent student who seemed more than confident with who she was, but this term she seems to have matured and gained more understanding of her strengths and weaknesses and when to use these and when to work on problem areas,” says Marrisa.
“Attending school and classes regularly has let everyone around her see her use more of her strengths a lot more than we got to last year. Her kindness, leadership skills, eagerness to learn, and use of her own initiative on top of her attendance are really paying off with her overall grades.”
At Casey-Lee’s age it can be hard to maintain an interest in school when there is so much happening around you that seems more important, but remember it is possible to find a healthy balance between school and your social life. Don’t take your education for granted.
“Many people don’t get the opportunity to go to school and get an education and so many of us take that for granted. I sure did. I once thought the start of high school didn’t matter and my grades weren’t important until years 11 and 12, but it does matter. Every year counts and I’m putting more effort into school for my own benefit and for a brighter future,” says Casey-Lee.