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Teens and Part-Time Work

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It’s a choice facing many families this year. Should you allow your teenager to work part-time during the school year? : About 65 per cent of high-school students who can work part-time do, according to a Statistics Canada study which shows Canadian kids work more during the school week than teens in nine other European and North American countries.

Some say work gives teens much needed maturity in the work force, helps build a work ethic and improves organizational skills, as well as providing spending money. Others say it distracts students from their real job – learning and getting good grades.

A researcher at Concordia University compared work and grade-point averages among high school students over a number of years. He concluded that working part-time hurts grades. The more a hours a teen works, the greater the harm to grades.

He also found the younger a teen, the greater the detrimental impact.

But other research out of Australia shows that part-time work benefits most students – as long as teens don’t work more than 12 hours a week.

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