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To everyone who joined these forums at some point, and got discouraged by the negativity and left after a while (or even got literally scared off): I'm sorry.

I wasn't good enough at encouraging people to be kinder, and removing people who refuse to be kind. Encouraging people is hard, and removing people creates conflict, and I hate conflict... so that's why I wasn't better at it.

I was a very, very sensitive teen. The atmosphere of this forum as it is now, if it had existed in 1996, would probably have upset me far more than it would have helped.

I can handle quite a lot of negativity and even abuse now, but that isn't the point. I want to help people. I want to help the people who need it the most, and I want to help people like the 1996 version of me.

I'm still figuring out the best way to do that, but as it is now, these forums are doing more harm than good, and I can't keep running them.

Thank you to the few people who have tried to understand my point of view so far. I really, really appreciate you guys. You are beautiful people.

Everyone else: If after everything I've said so far, you still don't understand my motivations, I think it's unlikely that you will. We're just too different. Maybe someday in the future it might make sense, but until then, there's no point in arguing about it. I don't have the time or the energy for arguing anymore. I will focus my time and energy on people who support me, and those who need help.

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I need help here
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James Comey Away
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Post: #1
I need help here

This is a second thread.

xcriteria told me that the CHSPE would essentially allow me to get out of school early. Not dropping out, graduating early. I've been pondering a lot about the CHSPE, and considering my most recent mental breakdown, I feel that this really is the best choice at this point. However, convincing family is a big hurdle.

This thread is essentially for those that have graduated early about giving me tips on possibly being able to convince my entire family about taking the CHSPE and allowing me to leave school early. I've stated enough times I can't take school anymore and it's getting worse every day.

I think that I need to convince them that I will consider college and really convince them that by taking the CHSPE is not dropping out in any way. Simply put, passing the CHSPE allows me to graduate early and that it is essentially equivalent to the high school diploma, and I can still go to college and work literally anywhere that requires a high school diploma. I think I also need to convince them that I will start working after a 6 month period of re-claiming my life and help support the family. That will get my brother off my back.

Any tips on presenting this? Anyone have their plans of being able to convince the family?

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02-15-2014 07:10 AM
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Post: #2
I need help here

Okay, before I start off with anything, what is CHSPE? :o

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02-15-2014 06:46 PM
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Potato Offline
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Post: #3
I need help here

i convinced my parents to let me drop out and get a ged. they pretty much agree with everything i have to say about education right now, my dad is a teacher, and he agrees that the job is ready for automation, and that the teaching profession is doomed.

i think the most important thing is to not let them frame the conversation as a question of "will you have to do things you don't like in life" or some philosophical bullshit like that. because that's not what it's about
i tried to frame the problem as me having two options to choose from, ged or graduation, and comparing them to see which one is best. ged saves me months of time that would otherwise be wasted on completely useless busywork in school, time that i could use more productively, while giving me an equal chance of getting into the colleges that i prefer. a graduation diploma gives me a "better" chance of getting into a good college, but i certainly won't need it, so this "advantage" didn't apply to me.
so, graduation has no advantage over ged, in terms of ensuring a good salary after college. so ged is the better option
that should be your main argument, how school sucks and all that can be supporting arguments (they probably won't do you much good), but remember to keep *future salary* at the center of it.
that's my advice

edit: also, i had to convince my parents that getting into a "top" college isn't worth the time, the real factor in determining your future salary is the major you pick.
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/29/opinio....html?_r=0

what have you said so far and what were the counter arguments?

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(This post was last modified: 02-15-2014 07:29 PM by Potato.)
02-15-2014 07:13 PM
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Post: #4
RE: I need help here

(02-15-2014 06:46 PM)MrJurgens Wrote:  Okay, before I start off with anything, what is CHSPE? :o

California High School Proficiency Exam. Which contrary to what the name implies, isn't limited to residents of California (although you have to physically be in California to take it).

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02-15-2014 11:29 PM
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xcriteria Offline
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RE: I need help here

In my case, once I learned about the GED+college option, I went to my dad and explained the idea to him. He was open to it, and that led to further conversations, talking to my mom, and talking to my guidance counselor at school.

My guidance counselor was actually very supportive, and expressed the idea that school isn't for everyone.

After that, I typed up a plan, and went over the draft with my dad. He made comments and marked it up, and I incorporated his suggestions.

Basically, the plan was in the form of a timeline. Certain dates for dropping out, taking the GED, taking the SAT, applying to a local college... and then the idea of graduating with a degree in computer science, and the default path of starting a job "in the computer industry" at some statistically common starting salary.

With the CHSPE, fortunately, you can take it BEFORE you quit school. (Often, taking the GED requires you to quit school first, which limits options.)

I think the thing to do is bring up the CHSPE, as a form of graduation, and a ticket to college, just like you explained. Start with a relatively low-stakes conversation, and see what they say. Explain that it would give you several options, including (1) getting a job, (2) starting college, and (3) learning on your own, or with the help of personal coaches/consultants/communities. (Or some combination of all three.)

See what they say, give them something to discuss, and prepare for further conversations on the topic.

It's worth noting that the standard registration deadline for the upcoming CHSPE test less than a week away. Your application, and $110 payment, must be received by Friday. (You can register late, but then you have to pay more.)

More information: CHSPE Registration.

The test itself is March 22, and there won't be another one until near the end of the calendar year. So, this is a conversation to have ASAP.

Options after the CHSPE

I suggest researching a few options, and being prepared to explain them, at least in follow-up conversations. One is the possibility of attending a local community college, where you could stay at home and commute. (Or, possibly, an online program from a similarly cheap, California-based college.) The advantages of this are: (1) you get to try out college, and (2) you have the option of working toward a 2-year associates degree, and (3) you have the option of transitioning to another college, bringing your credits along.

I can help with this, but basically one question is how much you'd have to pay. Depending on your family's income, you'll probably qualify for some kind of financial aid, usually in the form of PELL grants (which can pay a bit over $5000 per year in tuition.)

I'd also suggest researching the same thing for options like Goddard, which you mentioned, and maybe a couple other colleges... including with the idea of possibly doing a year or two in (cheaper) community college, then transferring.

Beyond college, research jobs... including possible short-term, local jobs, and longer-term jobs. If you did get a job after 6 months, or when the next school year would otherwise start, what might that be?

Another question is, would your parents really want you to spend earnings supporting the family, or would they prefer you pay for some of your own expenses, and perhaps save up for the future (like moving out at some point, paying for college, counseling, or other learning opportunities.)

What to focus on

That's all a lot to consider, so I suggest focusing explaining the option and benefits of taking the CHSPE now. In short, it gives you options for getting started on your post-college life sooner.

See what they say, let them think about it, and set the stage for further conversations.

It's important to remember that you'll have to deal with the complicated world of post-high school life anyway. The question is, whether you can begin to take those steps earlier, and at your own pace.

Does that help? The CHSPE about page is worth reading through, and maybe copying some text out of. I can imagine producing some kind of report or diagram that shows some of your options going forward, but I suggest just introducing the idea as simply as possible, soon.

(If it's not possible to send $110 off within a couple days, the late registration date is an option, but it makes sense to see if you can manage it this week. One plus of taking this exam is, with a good score, even if you did continue attending high school, it would let you apply for and get early acceptance at colleges.)

One of the purposes of an initial conversation is to learn what your family's main concerns are, so you can address them in further conversations, and with further research. So, it doesn't have to be an all-at-once thing. You'll have to educate them about what this exam even is, and what it means... remember, I hadn't even heard of it not so long ago, and it took some motivated research to figure out what it even was. So, your family will have a bit of a learning curve, as well.

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02-16-2014 01:08 PM
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xcriteria Offline
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RE: I need help here

(02-15-2014 11:29 PM)IvoTheMagnificent Wrote:  
(02-15-2014 06:46 PM)MrJurgens Wrote:  Okay, before I start off with anything, what is CHSPE? :o

California High School Proficiency Exam. Which contrary to what the name implies, isn't limited to residents of California (although you have to physically be in California to take it).

I didn't realize this, and that's a very important piece of information for people in some situations. This is something to explore future as an option to explain to people.

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02-16-2014 01:10 PM
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James Comey Away
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RE: I need help here

Thank you xcriteria for that very informative post.

I think I'm going to do this as a poster presentation, make a poster of my plans and perhaps make it easier to explain to my family, and hopefully they will listen to me. The main points I'm going to have to use are:
*The CHSPE is NOT in any way dropping out. In fact, the CHSPE is actually early graduation.
*A diploma granted by the CHSPE is completely equivalent to one granted in high school. It's not different in any way.
*I need to get out of school partly because I need to get a job and start supporting not only payments within the family but also start my own budget for things like food, etc.
*Colleges look at the CHSPE in the same way as a regular high school diploma.
*As such, leaving high school would give me liberties that I've never held before.
*I plan on getting a degree in History

I plan on working at the local library. I heard they pay legitimately well. Another option might be a supermarket or somewhere similar. Perhaps EB Games might as well be hiring. Something and somewhere relatively simple to start.

Once again, thank you xcriteria. And yeah, I need to get this ASAP.

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02-16-2014 02:02 PM
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xcriteria Offline
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RE: I need help here

From the CHSPE website:

How do students find out about the CHSPE?

California Code of Regulations, Title 5, requires the principal of each school that includes grades 11 and 12 to distribute to each student in those grades an announcement explaining the CHSPE. Distribution shall be made in sufficient time to enable interested students to meet all examination registration requirements for the fall test of that year.


@Hansgrohe, did you learn about the CHSPE in school?

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02-17-2014 05:18 AM
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James Comey Away
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I need help here

I probably did, but I can't remember.

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02-17-2014 05:38 AM
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xcriteria Offline
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RE: I need help here

Haha, school numbs people's minds so much, they wouldn't remember a path out if it was offered to them. (Or maybe they just don't explain it in a very appealing way.)

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02-17-2014 05:42 AM
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James Comey Away
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I need help here

^Most likely.

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02-17-2014 05:47 AM
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