DR. WALLACE: I'm a high school junior and would like to see my high school confidential records. I asked my counselor and she said, "No way." Why can't I see my own records? After all, they're mine. Also, who is allowed to see my records? Can future employers see my confidential records? — Corey, Ames, Iowa.
COREY: Your counselor was mistaken. You, with your parents or legal guardians, have the right to see your confidential records. Have a parent call the school principal and ask that you and the parent be allowed to see your file. Permission will be granted.
These rights become exclusively yours on your 18th birthday, upon graduation, or at the time you marry or enter military service, whichever comes first.
Other than you and your parents, only school officials are ever allowed to view your confidential file. Of course, future employers can request to see a transcript of your grades and the school will send it to them. That's one reason to do your very best academically!
WHY DO STUDENTS CHEAT?
DR. WALLACE: I'm in my second year at a university and can't believe the cheating that takes place on campus. I work my tail off just to get a B and some jerk sitting next to me cheats and gets an A. It just isn't fair. It almost makes me feel like cheating myself just to keep up. Why do people in college cheat so much? Why don't they study and learn something? — Nameless, Bloomington, Ind.
NAMELESS: Students cheat for a number of reasons. Parental pressure to get good grades, and the desire to socialize instead of studying, are often major causes. Of course, some students are just plain lazy and think they can get something for nothing. Many students have seen their parents cheat on their income tax returns and misuse company money and supplies for so long, that they have accepted the notion that it is OK to cheat as long as you don't get caught. They forget that it is morally wrong.
But wrong it is. Hang in there with your hard-earned, honest B's. You will be the winner in the long run.
I'M THINKING OF DUMPING HIM
DR. WALLACE: My boyfriend is 17 and is a nice guy when we are alone, but when he's with his friends, he ignores me or puts me down in front of them. Why would he do this and what can I do about it? I've already told him it makes me feel bad, but he hasn't changed. I'm 16 and I'm thinking of "dumping" him. — Brenda, Denver, Colo.
BRENDA: Your boyfriend is caught up in trying to impress his friends. He simply is not mature enough to show you respect and therefore to have a steady relationship with a female. You can either "dump" him, and tell him to call you when he's more interested in being with you than showing off for his friends, or you can stay with him - but not when his friends are around.
Dr. Robert Wallace welcomes questions from readers. Although he is unable to reply to all of them individually, he will answer as many as possible in this column. E-mail him at [email protected] To find out more about Dr. Robert Wallace and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.