Writer’s Opinion: The IA Lottery

By Diya Ramesh (’23)

woman wearing blue jacket sitting on chair near table reading books
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Lotteries. Those who are determined to find a cheap and easy way to earn some money spend a decent chunk of their income investing in tickets in a prize that they have almost close to no probability of winning. Yet, so many people spend their time and hard-earned money on these lotteries. However, that is not the type of lottery we will be discussing today. Today, we will be talking about a lottery that has affected each and everyone, believe it or not. Can you guess which one it is? That is right, folks! I am talking about the IA Entrance Lottery, and with this year’s lottery coming just around the corner, I am here to tell you that the International Academy should change its admissions process, because the current  system takes away opportunities from deserving students and makes the situation difficult for others .

First , the International Academy should change its admissions process, because the current  one takes away opportunities from deserving students. For example, as each of the consortium districts that come to the school only receive a limited amount of seats, and since many people apply, the school only allows the people who received a seat and a certain number of people in line on the waiting list to take the test. In turn,   many other students are so far down on the waiting list that they never even have the opportunity to take the test. I, personally, know so many students that would be a perfect match for our school, yet they never even have a chance to prove it. It is understandable that a lottery is necessary and fair method to choose the number of students needed, but the test should be administered before the lottery, so that only students who are truly capable will be able to attend. It is not only in the best interests of the school to make this change, but it is important for the students’ well-being, as well. The current process allows students to retake the test, and even if one does not pass the retake, they can attend summer school.  It becomes easy for most students with a lottery seat to enter the school. However, I have witnessed many brilliant-minded students struggling at the school, even those who passed the test the first time. Additionally, some students end up disliking the school and drop out, due to this struggle. If the school did not allow retakes and administered the test, first, it would be clear that some students would not be able to handle the pressure, workload, and stress, and they would, therefore, wind up with poor grades and mental health. After many candidates are weeded out, a lottery should be used to narrow the number down. This would be a much fairer option for all involved parties.


So, in conclusion, due to the fact that it causes many deserving students to not be admitted and makes high school too great a challenge for some of its students, the International Academy should change its admissions process.


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