Senioritis, burnout and the safest ways to deal with both.

<p>So, my D is now having her version of that infamous "malady" ;). Always being a perfectionistic A-student, she is now struggling to find the right balance for schoolwork, ECs, health and social life. The balance seems kind of unachievable and is slipping away most of the time. Any time she tries to relax and not to worry about homework and grades anymore, the former piles up (astronomically!:() and the latter goes down. Not knowing exactly how much of "not worrying" is too much ends up as a hard case of procrastination ... with the consequent freaking out. I try to help her see the things in perspective, but have no idea, too, how much of the relaxation is allowed to the ambitious seniors (with the accordingly ambitious college lists ;)) without risking to lose college acceptances.</p>

<p>Right now, at her school, she has 3 academic (AP) classes and 2 choir electives; she is also taking Japanese at the local c/c, continues to play her two instruments (with one of them - in prestigious youth orchestra) and to do her officer's (president, secretary) jobs in her h/s clubs. If the current tendency continues, she is likely to get lower than usual grades in 2nd semester (a B or two don't sound like a big deal, but if they happen to be for one or two academic subjects out of three ... could it cause some raised eyebrows in the most competitive admissions?), quit one of her instruments and the orchestra right before the end-of-year performances, let her clubs obligations go ... and, right now, she considers not signing-up for the spring semester of Japanese. (Instead, she wants to continue her language studies at c/c in summer, stress-free, when all her other obligations would be gone). But she worries that if all of the above occurs, that will look like definite plunge of her standards and some of the colleges might rescindle their acceptances. </p>

<p>She is not sure either, what would happen if she fulfils the aforementioned list of slacking opportunities only partially - and which part of that is more "dangerous": getting Bs in school APs or not continuing a c/c class (which she "promised" to take throught the school year in her applications) or quitting some or most of her ECs? Since there is no way of knowing which features of her apps were most compelling for adcoms, she can't decide which are the safest to let go ...</p>

<p>Also, while considering not to continue with her c/c classes this spring (the current course ends this month and the next starts in April), she have wondered, how and when should she notify her colleges about it (in case she decides not to sign-up): should she write about it right now everywhere she applied to? Or should she wait until April and notify only those colleges where she would be accepted (and see if some of them "dis-accept" her)? (My idea was to wait until she chooses ONE college she goes into - and notify it about her change of plans ... but, she said, what if they rescindle their admission and she will be left with none?)</p>

<p>Any advice or suggestions are welcome. :)</p>

<p>RELAX. Senioritis in small doses is not fatal. Colleges expect it. Getting a "B" instead of an "A" will not raise an eyelash, let alone an eyebrow, especially for such an accomplished student. A serious drop in grades[ I'm talking 'D's" ] or a serious moral lapse or crime are the only reasons a college would recind an acceptance. I suggest she let the Japanese go for the Spring semester, and notify her chosen college in April that she will be continuing her studies in the Summer [she could attribute to an unavoidable scheduling conflict if it would help her justify the change in plans] No college is going to recind an acceptance for dropping a class taken in addition to her HS classload. She could let her clubs go if she likes. I advise her to do her best to keep to her grades up [as much as possible] in the[hopefully unlikely] event that she decides she wants to transfer to another college, because her complete HS transcript will be required by any college she applies to.</p>

<p>Relax, and drop the Japanese. I don't think the colleges care, it will only place her into a higher course of japanese which she may or may not be ready for, and most importantly she will only be a senior in high school once, NOW (senior spring) is the time for a little fun.</p>

<p>Ditto the above. Last year at this time, so many things were converging and our DD who is usually pretty tough was stretched too thin.</p>

<p>One piece of advice. Depending on where your D is accepted and decides to attend, it may be unnecessary to take AP exams. DD's university really doesn't give credit for APs - essentially her placement would have been higher in certain courses. We had paid for all of her exams (6) but told her to skip several - physics, econ, and something else (it just goes to show what a difference a year makes that I can't remember what else she skipped). We didn't care if we had our money returned - we wanted her to have a more normal schedule. </p>

<p>Keep up grades, drop Japanese, drop a club if possible - exert your last chance for her to use you as an excuse for dropping something. Hang in there - next year will be better!</p>

<p>some related general reading on Senioritis:
<a href="http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/parents-forum/457525-washington-post-praise-senioritis.html%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/parents-forum/457525-washington-post-praise-senioritis.html&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>I 100% agree with the above advice having gone through one bout of senioritis last year in my family, and prepping for an early onset with my junior D. Keep up the grades as best can, but have some fun too.</p>