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School or Jobs: Which Should Be the Priority?

Many people start their first job while they are still in high school. There are many benefits to this, but sometimes jobs might affect how much time you put into school. When work and school begin to interfere too much, which should you prioritize more?


I believe school should be at the top of the priority list for the average student. For many jobs, an education is required to be hired. Not having a high school diploma will sometimes only get you a job that pays minimum wage, which has recently been proven not to support the average American's lifestyle due to inflation, according to David Cooper, who researches national and state-level effects of minimum wage. Because of this, I think students should focus more on school in order to get their diplomas and possibly go on to achieve a higher education and get a job in the future that is better suited to support their lifestyles.


Many people would probably disagree with me for a variety of reasons. However, you have to think about the long run. There's nothing wrong with making a career out of working as a cashier, waiter/waitress, or something else, but if you have bigger plans, then you probably wouldn't want to stay in those jobs for too long. Yes, spending money is nice and saving money for the future is extremely important, but to achieve your career dreams, you should focus on school more than your temporary jobs.


Of course, I don't deny that having a job during high school is one of the best preparational things students can do as they prepare to go into college or their careers. I do believe that students should have at least one job at some point during high school to get experience and to build skills that can be used in the workforce. However, jobs shouldn't the most important part of a high school student's life and they shouldn't affect how well a student performs in school.


See our sources here.