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How to Balance High School Responsibilities and a Part-Time Job

Being a high school student and part-time worker can be a lot. But you can balance both and still find time for fun and yourself with this advice.

Many high school students choose to work a part-time job while juggling academic responsibilities for various reasons. But holding down a job when you’re a student can be challenging, especially if you rely on your part-time wages to pay for food, gas, and social activities. Working and managing your school responsibilities is no easy feat, but it can be done with the right strategy. Whether you’re a babysitter on weekends or a tutor after school, here’s how to balance your job duties and high school obligations.

Benefits of part-time work in high school

If you’re in high school, you likely don’t want a part-time job to take up your free time. However, there are several benefits to working as a high school student. For example, a job can help you:

  • Gain confidence and experience working in a professional environment
  • Earn money to pay for things yourself
  • Build up a savings account for the future
  • Save up for college to minimize or avoid potential student loans
  • Start adding experience and skills to your résumé

There are so many job opportunities to explore as a student, including flexible part-time jobs that make it easier to work around your school schedule.

Related: Part-Time Jobs and Money-Making Ideas for Students

How to balance school and a part-time job

Being a student in and of itself is challenging, so you might think adding a job to the mix could become overwhelming. You could experience burnout trying to do both. However, certain part-time jobs will allow you to find a comfortable balance to meet your academic responsibilities and earn some cash. Here are some helpful tips to consider for balancing high school and part-time work.

Keep a detailed schedule

One of the primary issues you could run into working part-time is agreeing to work on days you have too many high school responsibilities. For example, you might say you will close on a Thursday night, but you forget you also have to study for a huge calculus test on Friday. Instead of trying to remember all your important deadlines in your head, write out a detailed schedule that’ll help you track all your responsibilities.

Focus on organization

Keeping all your schoolwork organized is essential if you want to work part-time. You’ll need to use your homework time more efficiently, and having your assignments, projects, and papers easily accessible helps a lot. Organization is a crucial part of good time management. Avoid throwing all your school stuff into one folder or binder. Instead, separate your materials by individual subjects. You can take your organization to the next level by color-coding by class.

Related: Video: Organization and Time Management Skills

Reduce distractions

Life throws numerous distractions our way every single day. Whether it’s drama between friends or wasting time on social media, you should try to reduce or eliminate distractions. Staying focused on your academics and professional development is challenging, and distractions only make it worse. While doing homework, consider using a Pomodoro timer, a website blocker, or other productivity tools to reduce distractions.

Prioritize self-care and mental health

Going to school and working will probably take up most of your free time. However, you must also make time to focus on caring for yourself and your mental health. Make sure to schedule time to engage in activities you enjoy, such as going for a walk, seeing a movie with friends, or attending your school’s football game. Work and school are important, but so is taking care of yourself and having fun.

Communicate clearly and often

People in your life should be aware of your hectic schedule, so talk to your parents, siblings, or other family members about it. When you start a part-time job, let your teachers and other school staff know about it so if you ever need extra help, they’re informed of your responsibilities. They may be able to work with you and figure out a plan to ensure you’re staying on top of your schoolwork. Some teachers might even be flexible and offer extensions on certain assignments—but don’t take advantage of that kindness. Only ask for help if you truly need it or in an emergency.

Related: 6 Reasons to Put in Effort With Counselors and Teachers

Doubling as a part-time employee and a high school student might seem intimidating, but thousands of teens find a way to manage their time effectively. When looking for part-time work, try to find a place that’s flexible and understanding for student workers and let them know that your schoolwork is a priority. A good employer will do their best to accommodate your needs and help you develop personally, professionally, and academically. In time, you’ll become an expert at managing school and your part-time job!

If this is your first job and you really want to nail it, check out Your First Part–Time Job: A Guide for High Schoolers.

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About Carolina Jacobs

Carolina Jacobs is a Managing Editor at Classrooms.com.


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