Highland Rambler

The student news site of Highland High School in Salt Lake City, Utah

Highland Rambler

Highland Rambler

It Is Too Expensive To Graduate High School


For many students, the most important day of high school is the last day, their graduation. We have been planning and anticipating this day since we walked through those big scary doors as freshmen.  

Students wait for this day forever, but we rarely think about what happens behind the scenes and the amount that we have to do to get ready for that one brief walk across a stage.   

In early November, seniors had the cap and gown meeting where we were given all of the information we needed leading up to graduation, specifically the packages that we must buy to get our clothes for graduation. We got our packets and opened to the pricing page, and there right on the paper is the cheapest package option of $84 for a gown that we can’t even keep. 

Or so we thought.  

When you look to the very bottom of the page, there is an option for $32. But why is it so hidden? The $84 package includes a ring along with the cap and gown. The whole assembly turned into one big sales pitch to a bunch of 17 and 18-year-olds who were already thinking about how to pay for everything else that comes after high school. And now we have to pay for our gowns – gowns that we wear for two hours — too. 

This presentation was boring and didn’t necessarily make me want to buy stuff along with the cap and gown, it just felt random for them to be giving this presentation to teenagers. 

The fees are nonstop in high school: $90 for one AP test, paying for ACTs, SATs, and class fees in general. We have application fees for colleges, and now we are all looking at the prices that we have to pay just to get a meal plan at a college or park our cars. 

With the prices of all the accessories you can buy, with some going for over $200, some people may not be able to afford them or just not want to buy them. This could make them feel bad if they have a blank gown with few accessories and their peers have just about everything. 

“It feels wrong to just have a bunch of students wearing all of these things,” Highland senior Sabrina Wright said. “Some people can’t have those privileges.” 

The pricing for renting our graduation gowns, caps, and any other swag we may want is way too much, especially because at the end , we can’t even keep the gown as a memento, we must return it to Josten’s, company that is making a killing on “celebrating” seniors who graduate. 

There are fee waivers that students can apply for, but many students don’t and it is still difficult to buy. 

“This just shows that the school system is fully centered around making money,” Wright said. “It feels like they don’t even care how or what we are doing as students and just want money.” 




Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All Highland Rambler Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *