Q:

My 16-year-old son is very upset with me because I won't let him work. He even says he hates me for not letting him get a job. I want him to concentrate more on his schoolwork. Is it a good idea for high-school students to work? - For Study Time

A:

If your son has acceptable grades ("C" or better), we see no reason why he cannot work, providing he does not work more than 10 hours per week. This seems to be the limit to the number of hours that students can work without suffering a decline in grades.

Working might help your son become more responsible and mature. We are definitely not impressed with his hateful attitude toward you. Because of this, you need to have a crystal-clear agreement with him about the total number of hours he will work and how many hours each day. It might be wise to have this agreement signed by both of you. Part of the agreement should be that if any of his grades go below a "C," for any reason, he will have to quit his job until they improve on the next report card.