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Exams or Candygrams?

The holidays are a time for people to spend time with their family and friends, and in some cases exchange gifts and presents. Whether it’s someone’s lover, friend, family, or any other acquaintance in their life, holidays are typically for appreciation and love for each other. One common act of affection is buying chocolates and other candies, and the candygram service at Nutley High School is a great way to do that. However, students seeing their peers receiving loads of candy during class while they receive nothing can make them feel left out. Since the service costs money, it’s possible that certain students don’t have enough money to purchase a candygram. Some students may also feel regretful if they receive gifts as they didn’t get any gifts for their friends. The candygram service does benefit student clubs and associations, but the feelings of minor resentment some students may feel is a justifiable emotion. 


Sitting in class and watching all your classmates become showered with gifts of candies while you sit, receiving nothing, can definitely hurt your feelings. It can make people feel excluded and left out of the holiday festivities. For people going through friendship issues, seeing a lot of people in class receive gifts except themselves can make them feel ashamed and embarrassed for themselves. There is nothing wrong with people showing their love for their friends, but showing that affection by making it an entire spectacle in class can be demoralizing for people going through personal friendship issues.


Knowing that you want to buy things to show your love for friends, but you don’t have the money for it, can also make students feel discouraged. Some people at NHS are squeezed for money, whether because they recently lost a job or because they need to provide for their family; not everyone has an excess of money. Candygrams aren’t free, and anybody purchasing one had to spend money to pass it on. There are some students who really wish to participate in the service, but for whatever reason cannot because of their financial status. Some people also consciously do not buy candygrams for their friends because they didn't expect any from them, so receiving an unexpected candygram can create an initial feeling of bliss and glee, but eventually it fizzles into guilt and regret. Especially if the friends are in the same class while candygrams are handed out, unwanted angst and embarrassment would be produced between the peers. Providing this feature does not have to disappear, but it can be done in a more discreet way. 


The candygram service does, however, prove to be beneficial for some people. It is commonly run by different student groups and associations within NHS. Candygrams aren’t free, so the money that students spend on candygrams is a decent portion of the funding for the clubs. The numerous associations within NHS provide many different groups of people for students to make friends and relationships. However, there are other ways for clubs to receive funding. They can participate in bake sales, or they can create and sell memorabilia. The different ways to increase funding can limit certain negative emotions surrounding candygrams. Also, the service can continue, just not happen in front of entire classes to see. An alternative option would be to hold the candygram exchange right after school in the cafeteria, similar to the many bake sales that happen. It ensures that students still receive the candygrams they're entitled to, just not in an extremely public way. 


The candygram service in Nutley High School can add unwanted anxiety within a student's life and between their friendships. It can make people who received an excess of candygrams but didn’t send a single one out to their own friends feel guilty. On top of that, people who have no money to purchase these candygrams can feel left out and ashamed. The benefit of providing for certain NHS clubs and associations does not outweigh the reason to have this service happen in the middle of class. The service doesn’t have to end, but it shouldn’t happen during class in front of everyone.