Senioritis, as defined by ecampustours.com, is disinterest in school-related activities, especially academics, that afflicts seniors their last semester.
Symptoms include reduced attention to studies and extracurricular actives, making up excuses not to attend classes, sleeping during class and suffering from a severe fixation with partying.
At the start of the school year, seniors are ecstatic to come back to school and officially be the ones to "rule the school." In the fall, seniors get involved by showing school spirit, dressing up on spirit days and attending all the football games. As the year continues, participation and interest wanes until 12th-graders have a bad case of senioritis.
Now, only the underclassmen attend basketball games, participate in events such as Winterfest week and cheer loudly at pep rallies, while the seniors sit down.
"When we were all underclassmen we all thought senioritis was something seniors made up, but now that it's here, we have taken apathy to a whole new level," said Jessica Limper, Greenbrier High School's senior class president.
Educators are so concerned with this phenomenom that some contend senior year has become a party-time rather than a time to prepare for the next phase of life.
Elected officials also have complained by saying that the second half of the year wastes students' time and taxpayers' money.
Some officials, however, are working on ways to make the year more productive by raising graduation requirements or expanding programs that will potentially allow students to earn high school and college credits at the same time.
Why is senioritis so common?
Most seniors have been accepted to college, so they tend to have the mind-set that they do not have to work harder because they are already in. The problem is that senioritis in high school also will affect many students once they enter college. Those who take slack classes instead of classes on their learning level will be behind the curve of more "serious" students.
Bridget Gorta, a junior at Greenbrier, doesn't want to be among the afflicted.
"I know next year I will have to work extra hard to prevent myself from catching senioritis," she said.
Unfortunately, there is no treatment for senioritis and the only remedy is graduation.
Until some progress is made, all seniors should live by the motto: "Senioritis: we'd fight for a cure if we weren't so lazy."
Meera Venkatraman, 17, is a senior at Greenbrier High School.
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