Grades, Grades, Grades: Difference between pass & fail can be devastating

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Ruth Pierre-Charles, new millenial columnist / Headline SurferBy RUTH PIERRE-CHARLES
Case By Case
Headline Surfer
 

DELAND, Fla. -- Grades are not supposed to make students feel like they are a failure.

Instead, grades should be intended to make students feel like they have reached a certain level. But competition can bring out the best and the worst in individuals.

Some people are willing to take momentous strides to get ahead, but with the constant pressure of having the highest grade in academia, others still cannot bear the failure. They don’t know how to handle it. Students in academia find themselves caught in this hyper-intensive cutthroat environment where failure doesn’t seem like an option. The people who have bad grades are dismissed as losers.

 Grades, grades, grades, is what the world judges student success or failure by. Surely, there is a better way. The pressure to get good grades is often unbearable.

If a person is seeking financial assistance, their grades have to be strong. If a student is trying to apply for an advanced degree such as a master's or a juris doctorate (law school) if they don’t have the grades, they don’t advance. That is a cold reality. 

This socially-constructed concept of good grades encourages competition and brings out the best in people. Or so it would seem. It also reveals the crushing impact on students who just don't make grade. This negative reinforcement can be harsh form of judgment in a society where good grades mean everything.

Grades, Grades, Grades / Headline SurferGrades, grades, grades, is what the world judges student success or failure by. Surely, there is a better way. The pressure to get good grades is often unbearable.

If a person is seeking financial assistance, their grades have to be strong. If a student is trying to apply for an advanced degree such as a master's or a juris doctorate (law school) if they don’t have the grades, they don’t advance. That is a cold reality. 

This socially-constructed concept of good grades encourages competition and brings out the best in people. Or so it would seem. It also reveals the crushing impact on students who just don't make grade. This negative reinforcement can be harsh form of judgment in a society where good grades mean everything.

Perhaps the time is hand for society to stop attaching so many strings to good grades and maybe we’ll see a dramatic spike in true knowledge. A wave of excitement for learning---not for the money, not for the prestige, not for the status.

This wave could be an educational enlightenment that creates, inspires and trains individuals to invent.

 

 

 

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Short Bio

Ruth Pierre-Charles is a Political Science major pursuing her bachelor's at Stetson University in DeLand where she resides during the school year. In addition to her undergraduate studies, Pierre-Charles, 20, of Bradenton, FL, is a former student president of Stetson's American Civil Liberties Union. Last year, she interned for the Office of the Attorney General for the (Washington) District of Columbia. She is an active member of the Volusia-Flagler ACLU. Pierre-Charles' Headline Surfer column is called "Case by Case," reflecting her moderate political views.