Freshmen can now access class rank

Graschelle Hipolito, Sports Editotr

Traditionally, class ranks are an eagerly-awaited mystery to students until the end of their sophomore year of high school. Aeries Student Portal, however, now allows the freshman class access to information that shows how they rank compared to their fellow students.

For some students, academics spur an internally competitive nature. Grades and test scores are constant factors that fuel a student’s drive to achieve success. Class ranks can give freshmen a potentially relieving insight and a reassuring sense of progress on their academic standing, especially after the commonly hectic transition from middle school to high school.

“In my case, I find it very reassuring that I am doing a good job with school and ranking at a high level,” freshman Cristian Rodriguez said. “It gives me a slight satisfaction that my hard work is paying off, but in some cases for others who aren’t doing so well, [knowing class ranks] can also motivate them to do better and try more in their academics.”

Having access to class ranks as early as a student’s freshman year may also instill intrinsic motivation to carry on a strong work ethic throughout the duration of high school.

“It encourages me to do better knowing I’m being compared to everybody else,” freshman Erick Camangian said. “It’s not really scary to me because I know I can do better throughout the rest of my years.”

As one of the first Bear Creek classes to be conscious of their class ranks as early as their freshmen year, some students view this knowledge as beneficial.

“[Class ranking] gives me a different perspective on where I need to be to help me stay ahead and not all behind in high school,” freshman Allie Williamson said. “Finding this out my freshman year gives me an idea of where I should be and what I need to accomplish.”

On the other hand, knowing class ranks and comparing ranking to peers at such an early stage of a student’s high school career may be more harmful than beneficial for the students who may feel easily defeated after one bad semester and who think they will never be competitive.

“I feel like the freshman rank shouldn’t really be taken seriously because it’s barely the first year and right now it’s solely based off of first semester grades, when the freshmen are still getting used to high school,” freshman Kate Lagera said. “I think a lot can change for us freshmen within the next three years of high school and they shouldn’t really be so hard on themselves for not being where they want to be rank wise, since we just started high school.”

With only one semester of high school under their belt, some students may feel as though it is too early to detect and academically categorize the good students from the bad.

“I think [knowing class ranks] could be a bad thing for freshmen because all we’d be thinking about is how we can get our grades up,” freshman Edwin Esquejo said. “We could end up drowning in stress.”

While having a higher class rank may raise a student’s anxiety and feelings of pressure to maintain or even improve their standing, being ranked lower could deter students from remaining confident and hopeful in their academic performance that could persist in the following years of high school.

“I feel like the freshmen aren’t going to challenge themselves anymore and they’re going to want to choose classes that will keep them in a comfortable state, which isn’t a good thing,” Lagera said. “When we were given time in class to think about [our future schedules], seeing what rank they had really persuaded them to choose the easy route for the easy A’s.”

Although the idea of being compared to peers can cause stress for freshmen, counselors may think exposing students to their rank raises awareness and promotes more focus about their academics.

“I think freshmen being able to know their class rank helps them to be aware of the necessity to have good grades, focus on their GPA, work hard, and shows them that what they do now is going to matter later,” counselor Ivan Tunnell said.

Freshmen have to juggle the workload of their classes, along with possible sport or club participation, a new environment to adapt to, and different expectations. Granting access through the Aeries Student Portal can open yet another effective opportunity that, depending on the student, will pose an impediment to a student’s academic potential or be used as an advantage for students to continue working hard.

With three more years of their high school career to look forward to, it is ultimately left up to the students of the class of 2018 in how they decide to take responsibility for their future, fulfill their personal goals and reach their own success.