Retroactive Rule Change

Santa Barbara High School is dropping plus and minus grades. Teachers were told last week and the students were not told at all. The policy is being implemented right now for the grades the students just worked for second semester. So if you got a “+” grade it is gone and if you got a “-” grade it is gone. If you achieved 100 percent for an A+, you will now be graded the same as if you received 90 percent or an A-.

Apparently this policy was made five years ago and the principals and school district recently met and voted to implement it.

Though it does not affect grade point average, plus and minus grades are considered by private colleges and employers when reviewing transcripts. Many like to know where a candidate’s strengths are and where they achieved or made an extra effort.

In the real world there is a big difference between 90-100 percent, 80-89.9 percent, and 70-79.9 percent. Ninety percent does not equal 100 percent. What does a 10 percent increase or decrease mean in sales, sales prices, output, production, benefits, salary, jobs created, services, unemployment, tax rates, population growth, interest rate, cost of goods, gross national product, and “fill in the blank”?

Are we sending a message to the students to just do the minimum? Are we changing the rules on them the last week of school?

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