By Kailey Smith
An Assessment Committee investigated the idea of changing to a percentage based system, and presented their ideas to the School Board in May of 2014. The first marking period of this year the new system is in place. Prior to the board presentation, the committee surveyed students, parents and teachers of Red Lion High School.
Some of the questions included on the survey were, “Would you work harder if there was not only a percentage on the report card but also a letter grade?” Over 60% of Red Lion’s students agreed that they would work harder with the new grading system. Not only did they say they would work to get the higher letter grade, they also said they would like the challenge.
The students of Red Lion now have a goal to reach. Students have a better opportunity for colleges to look at their college transcripts and see their grades. Mrs. Kathy Moser was on the committee last year; she was asked the same question about how she personally feels about the new grading system.
“There is a big discrepancy between nine points. Now students have the chance to work hard,” said Mrs. Moser. “For example a 87-89 would be a B+ but a 80-82 would be a B- and anything in between that would be a B.”
The new grading system not only helps the teachers with not filling out as many academic at risk forms, but also having the students aim for a higher grade than a 64%.
High school social studies teacher and Mr. Kevin Zieber spoke about the change in the grading system, saying, “Students and parents are going to like having more of a precise grade.” But he also said there are some downsides, “Students and parents are not going to be in favor of having to do math to figure out the GPA,” said Zieber.
He also made a point from a parent’s perspective, saying “ As a parent, I don’t think its going to have a big affect on the students, because students are just going to look at it as if it was the old grading system.”
The high school teaching staff, the school board, and many parents are hoping that the new grading system will not only look good for colleges but encourage students to work harder toward reaching the goal of higher grades and have a feeling of success.