By Kyle Allen
After four years of incredible experiences at Mira Costa, it’s clear we have something special on this campus. Few other schools can match what this eclectic mix of students brings to the table.
Costa’s greatest strength is that it is not sheltered from the hard realities of the real world. Freshmen are forced from the first day of school to fend for themselves and figure out how to make the school suit them. Hands aren’t held, and students quickly learn the importance of self-reliance.
Costa students are taught to never take anything for granted. We have to advocate for ourselves in the classroom, with the administration and on the field. Guidance Counselors help us pick our classes, but it’s up to the student to determine how he wants to spend his high school career. In a free market system of choosing electives, sports and rigor of schedule, Costa students are taught to live and die with the consequences of their decisions. A plethora of opportunities are presented, but it is up to the students how to take advantage of them.
This philosophy isn’t always popular, and the administration could certainly ease some of its more Draconian policies like commitment forms and the short windows of time to change or drop classes.
Yet, a school that causes its students to survive on their own results in students who are incredibly self-sufficient. Private schools can’t boast the same Darwinist effect,because they are designed to hold a student’s hand every step of the way.
We at La Vista are often known for our tendency to dig up the less-than-admirable aspects of Mira Costa, to the chagrin of the people who work so hard to keep it great.
That we are even able, and rarely discouraged. from criticizing the school speaks volumes about the freedom Mira Costa gives its students. Few other schools would provide an environment that allows something like La Vista to thrive. The culture of independence and self-responsibility enables us to listen, observe, analyze and come to conclusions.
As a public school with labor disputes, funding shortages, and the occasional criminal-student, attending Mira Costa provides an exercise in surviving in the real-world. Costa students who choose to take advantage of this freedom and embrace responsibility graduate with far more life skills than their counterparts at other, more protective schools who aren’t given the same freedom to both succeed and fail.