Article by Bethan Henderson
Photograph by Nina Mabasa
While the seniors wrap up their Extended Essays, the juniors have just begun theirs. However, this time around, it’s due in a mere nine weeks instead of a year. Administration explained the deadline move, saying that getting the EE done earlier will reduce the workload in senior year and is something that many students from previous years had recommended when reflecting on the process.
But with the due date of March the 23rd looming ever closer, students have begun to question this decision; while some are happy with it, others say that it crams all the stress and hard work into a shorter period of time.
“Although there are positives to the decision, I think I share an opinion with many in junior year when I say that balancing a heavier workload is made considerably more difficult when pressured to complete a very important assignment like the EE in a short amount of time,” says junior Iris M.
However, other students are thankful for the new due date. Junior Nanami Y. says, “Personally, I’m kinda glad we have such a strict deadline now.”
Junior Gabriella R. agrees, saying, “Getting the EE out of the way now will be better, but it does seem a bit unfair. I think the main issues from this deadline are the prospect of inequality and seeming unfairness of it. Also, there could be conflicts with the IB course load like IAs, causing students to be more stressed.”
Mr. Relf, the IB coordinator, admits to the difficulty of the new change. “It’s pretty challenging, undoubtedly. It’s a little bit of a social experiment. As with anything dealing with such a large group of people, there isn’t a perfect timeline that will work for everyone.”
On the topic of fairness, he says, “Just because the seniors had a year, doesn’t mean they took a year to do it. Have they spent a year producing, crafting and editing an essay? No. The majority of their time they’ve done absolutely nothing. They’ve spread 40 hours over the year.”
He concludes by saying, “Do I think it’s a good decision? I don’t know. It’s a decision we made based on feedback from students. It’s also why we’ve kind of left it open…If I can get 60% to 75% of the juniors to get their EEs done, then I think it’s a good thing. You’ll probably thank me for it in November of your senior year.”