While presenting to a diverse group of K-12 educators at Penn University, a stimulating debate ensued, after I said that teachers need to stop traditional grading. “What about GPAs,” one attendee asked. “The colleges use GPAs for admission.”
I responded with a question of my own: “Do we have to keep giving students grades, just so colleges can have GPAs to measure student success?” There was a rather long silence, as the thought resonated around the room.
I strolled from one table to the next, listening to educators discuss grades, and one attendee suggested that much of what we do in the K-12 world is based on what colleges demand. “It’s sort of like the tail wagging the dog,” she said.
If post-secondary institutions are the tail and K-12 schools are the dog, isn’t it time for the dog to wag its own tail?
If teachers eliminate traditional grading, won’t colleges have to devise a better way to evaluate students?
And wouldn’t that change everything?
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