After School Jobs

Shi-Ann Rodriquez, Reporter

Many students at West have part-time jobs, teaching them to juggle school, work, social life and family obligations. Oftentimes they are overwhelmed and one area of their life suffers.

Many students use the money that they earned to pay all of their bills. West High student David Duarte says he has a job, “To get money.” With that hard-earned money, “I have to pay for my mom’s gas bill, cable bill, and my phone bill. I have to pay for food and my clothes,” he says.

Paying bills is a big part of growing up. As a teenager, buying your own clothes and having to pay for your own food is a good way to show you what it will be like when you move out and start living on your own. Working while in high school may show students how important education is, while others are more focused on receiving their next paycheck.

Zaria Robinson says, “I do my homework after work or I try to get it done in class. I would recommend working at my jobs (McDonalds) for someone that is looking for a first job.”

The Oklahoma newspaper found that one in every four high school students ages 16 and up works at a part time job. Researchers at the Universities of Michigan and Penn State have found out that Caucasian students are more likely to have part time jobs, but other minorities work more hours. They also found that most students who work more than 15 hours are usually the ones who are involved with drinking, smoking, drug use, and they also earn low grades. Students also start missing school and absences start to gradually increase.

Most states limit the time that teens work to 18 to 19 hours a school week. There are limits for certain ages. The Department of Labor regulates that minors from age 16-17 can work the maximum of six school days per week.