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Growing up in the “hood” of east Oakland, I often heard my peers talk about how boring school was and how it wasn’t for them. Although I looked up to these people, I didn’t agree with their opinion of school; at least not until I went to high school. My name is Marquita Price, a former 4.0 honor roll student, who didn’t graduate from high school.
I went to Encinal High in Alameda and school had always been fun and easy for me. When I show people my grades and achievements before high school, the first thing they say is, “What the hell happened?” I didn’t finish high school because I was content with everyone knowing I was smart. School for me became an everyday social event, and I was bored of the curriculum. I would finish assignments quickly and just stopped applying myself. The thought that I was a 4.0 student who had the capability to do whatever I wanted when I put my mind to it really clouded my head and prevented me from putting my all into my academics in school.
Since I didn’t attend any grade schools in Alameda, none of my peers knew me. So often the good report card and being place in higher or more challenging classes than the average freshmen made me too comfortable. All the friends I had knew I could be a “nerd” when I wanted to be. Since my mind was clouded with such grandiose thoughts of myself, I really didn’t mind failing the classes that considered me to be advanced. Once I made more friends, I noticed none of them were in my classes so failing my classes meant I would now be able to spend more time with my friends. Before I knew it, I was too far behind to graduate.
Basically, I didn’t graduate because the curriculum wasn’t challenging enough, nor did it relate to me; so I got caught up in the social realm of high school. Being the most popular can come with a high price. Attending EOYDC has benefitted me in several ways, from giving me a reason for staying out of the streets to development of leadership skills. The most valuable thing EOYDC has done for me is to help refuel my flame for endless knowledge and change my outlook on teachers/instructors in the hood. There are still people who genuinely care about the education of the community, and those people are at EOYDC.
2010 GED Graduate