It wasn't until I moved to New York City that I became aware of the stresses place upon urban youth. I'm not even talking about the typical adolescent grievances and angst, but rather that experienced by the even younger sect of kiddies.
Such intense pressure is placed upon children to gain admission into certain pre-kindergarten schools, and the pressure goes in an upward motion, extending to middle school and beyond. All this time, I thought that putting together a solid application for college was the real onslaught of academic stress. Turns out this is not the case in this city – the ripple effect of being accepted to a desired pre-k program is astounding.
I just read a New York Times article regarding the situation, recounting the experiences of parents who have had the hardest job of telling their children that they were rejected from such-and-such a school. The obvious desire for their children to excel and succeed, parents are flocking to tutoring agencies around the city to ensure that their children receive as much of a leg-up as possible in the early stages of academia.
I don't know who is more stressed – the parents who have to watch their child endure the process, or the kids themselves.
Written by Colleen Kropp