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As a former Bais Yaakov student, I have to say the schools today overload their students with tests, midterms and finals. My high school years were the hardest years of my life and many like myself struggled, just barely getting by.

While I understand the importance of keeping busy, there is also a limit to how much work should be demanded from students. While many girls can handle more than one test at a time, there are many who struggle on the sidelines, barely able to keep up with their peers.

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The schools stress the “pnimius” – insides of a person, and then focus too much on grades. If a girl’s insides were truly important, they would make the girls feel good about themselves.

High school years are hard enough to navigate without so much schoolwork. This is a very delicate age, and teachers and principals should focus more on extra curricular activities, as well as trips, so girls can also have fun while at the same time being a serious student.

A Former Bais Yaakov Girl

Dear Rachel,

I am a girl in my first year of high school and I want to say that the work they put on our backs is ridiculous. We don’t have lives anymore. All we do all day is study. At home the tediousness and boredom of it all makes us munch away and of course there’s no time for exercise. A lack of sleep makes it difficult to focus on anything. Honestly, is it normal for someone to be up until 3 o’clock in the morning studying for 3 exams on the following day — let alone having to wake up at 7:00 a.m. to catch the bus to school? It’s all very unfair!

One year down, three more to go (groan)

Dear Former BY Girl and Groan,

We hear you loud and clear; now let’s hope school officials are listening as well…

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