Author: Tamilore Ajayi
The California High School Proficiency Examination saved my life. For two years, I was trapped within the four walls of an education system that clipped my wings and didn’t let me fly. I was not able to advance my knowledge at my own pace and had to abide by A-G requirements and the path my counselor chose for me.
When I found out about the California High School Proficiency Examination (CHSPE), I rushed at the opportunity to be free and finally learn what I am passionate about: psychology, children and mental health. In all of two weeks, I worked hard to learn everything on the CHSPE. On March 16, 2019, I embarked to take and pass the test that was the stepping stone for my educational journey.
At 16, I found myself happily saying goodbye to high school and welcoming college with open arms. The social construct of the K-12 schooling system was not one I resigned with. It was draining being around kids who were consumed with popularity, social status and treated school as a fashion show rather than a place to learn. It was amazing for me to finally be in a place with like-minded individuals who valued education just as much as I did. More importantly, it was amazing for me to break free from the bureaucracy of education and form my own educational pathway, a pathway I am accountable for.
Leaving high school early made me an adult two years early. I have been surrounded by individuals who are much older than me but match me intellectually. I have an understanding of what it means to be an adult and have knowledge on the responsibility and accountability that accompany freedom. The independence I have built through forming my own educational pathway has made me a self-disciplined and diligent student, who will be entering UCLA in the fall of 2021.