- Posted by:
- Michael Grose
It’s Schoolies Week.
It's that time of the year when young people gather in a beachside resort to
celebrate the end of twelve years of secondary school, and let their hair down after the pressure of Year 12.
I know a young person want to let their hair down, but is Schoolies the only way?
What is the place of Schoolies Week?
Schoolies is big!
It's also big business for many coastal towns as the regular inlux of teenagers certainly gets the cash registers ringing in pubs, food places and entertainment venues.
It’s grown from a small group of gatherings to have a massive brand presence. The word itself has massive meaning for adults and young people.
It’s reached the ridiculous situation where it’s common for many young people to organise their Schoolies Week accommodation 12 months ahead. They’ve organised Schoolies Week before they’ve even opened up a book for their Year 12 studies.
With 21st birthday’s lacking in lustre Schoolies has become the most significant rite of passage for many young people. Certainly, it’s the most widely recognised.
If the newspaper and TV images are accurate then Schoolies is a boozy affair that is mostly good-natured, but does involve a degree of risk.
With the heady cocktail of youthfulness, alcohol and freedom in abundance it amazes me that the amount of 'trouble' that usually occurs at most Schoolies is relatively minor.
Can we do it another way?
There are other ways for young people to recognise that their school life has finished, than Schoolies. There are already pockets of young people who do very different activities to mark their transition out of secondary school. Just this week I heard of a group of young people who are heading off to Cambodia to work in a village. It's a two week sojourn in a different culture that requires young people to help out rather than break out.
This is just one example of young people doing their transition from secondary school differently. I know there are plenty of others.
Alternatively, there are many great rites of passage programs
that help young people make the transition to adulthood.
What do you think?
Is Schoolies Week, and what it has become, an appropriate way for young people to end their years at school?
Is Schoolies Week just a reflection of our current society? It could be argued that getting together and getting drunk is an appropriate welcome to the world of Australian adulthood.
I think we can do better than this. What do you think?
- confidence, drinking, people, Schoolies, teen, teenagers, young