New grading policy: Yay or Nay?

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The anxiety worsens// Changing the grading policy will become a struggle for students and teachers alike. It is quite unnecessary for these changes to occur. (Photo courtesy of istock)

 

by: Ienka Santos

Clark County School District (CCSD) has recently released a notice about the change in the grading policy. The upcoming assignments will now be split between 90% summative and 10% formative. 

In the past, the 2020-2021 school year, the grading policy has been 60% summative and 40% formative. Since then, CCSD has bumped the percentages up to 75% and 25% respectively. This is more than generous of them, I would say. Now, they’re bumping it up even more. It’s one thing to have a change, but it’s another to not consult students about this grading policy. Otherwise, the board of education would understand that the previous policy was running perfectly fine and allowed students to be better learners and excel in their studies. However, the implementation of the new grading policy can completely destroy a student’s grade, permitting one wrong assignment to drop grades by almost two letter grades. 

One can only imagine the amount of stress this adds to the student’s shoulders. They would have to spend hours upon hours studying for their summative assessments because they would be weighted more towards the final grading process. Some may say the new policy is a way to motivate students to study and pay more attention in class but the 90:10 ratio will likely cause students’ grades to plummet and be more harmful rather than helpful. 

When asking students about the policy, many have mixed feelings, but most believe that this sudden change is entirely unnecessary.

“The system we have now is working just fine,” senior Paola Solaegui said. “I don’t get why they want to change it because it would only confuse future students.” 

 Most students learn more through homework. Homework, for those who don’t know, goes into the formative category.  If these formative assignments barely count anymore, then teachers will plan on lessening or removing them causing more failing grades. This also piggybacks off another policy they have created where they are not allowed to grade homework that was given to students. It’s not surprising that kids don’t pay that much attention in class, which is why homework is necessary as a way for them to practice at home.

“Personally, for me, I learn a lot better with the homework that I’m given,” Solaegui said. “It makes the content easier to understand and is just a great example that sticks in my mind.”

Homework, even though it may not seem like it, is beneficial to everyone. Some teachers give them out as busy work, but most of the time it is used as a different way to teach. It can enhance students’ education even more and help them learn time management.

The 90:10 policy affects a student’s scores so much that one bad grade can drop a student’s grades immensely. This isn’t good because their GPAs will definitely be affected which means their transcripts will decrease in favorability and therefore decrease their chances of getting into a good college if they wish.

I might be being a little bit harsh, so let’s look at the bright side of this entire situation. Truthfully, I can’t think of anything good about this change; maybe the teachers will have less to grade, but that’s basically it. 

This new grading policy is completely unneeded. It just creates more complications for everyone. Having policy changes every year is just exhausting to the students and the staff.