Perspectives is an Arlingtonian segment in which students share their own experiences surrounding an issue at Upper Arlington High School.

Compiled by Dylan Carlson Sirvent and Sophie Yang, ’19. Photos by Sophie Yang, ’19.

Q: Are there any stigmas surrounding Community School?

“Yes. People say CS is easy and a place to go to when you don’t feel like doing school. That’s not true at all. Especially in literature class, we get to pick our topics and create the unit ourselves so that involves a lot of research and planning.” —junior Yana Williams

“Defnitely, yes. My mom was a little skeptical of Community School when I first thought about joining. She made me go ask [teacher Stephen] Stern who teaches science in Community School but also Honors Chemistry. She made me confirm that it wasn’t full of ‘drugs and hippies.’ Mr. Stern did confirm the drug rate is pretty much the same—they’re just regular kids on a slightly different form of education. There’s definitely a stereotype of academic underachievement. But personally, I’m in three AP-IB classes and Community School. There are plenty of people who take double English or IB Calculus or IB Psych. There’s nothing that stops you from taking Community School and higher level classes.” —senior Alden Trotter

“Yeah, for sure. But everyone at Community School just wants to learn but in a different way. For example, I’m on my odyssey right now. Today I went hiking for three hours to find animals. You really just get to learn about what you want to do.” —senior Farah Ayyash

“Absolutely. What I want to hit home is that the stigma is just a stigma and not factual. I’ve grown so much in [Community School]. Some of my best thoughts have been there. There’s a constant conversation. That’s what Community School is like: it produces people who are outspoken, who tell their ideas to the world and develop their ideas.” —junior Cam Clark