Wednesday, December 13, 2006

More Educational Dumb Ideas...

From Ace of Spades, we have this mess: Mass. High School Stops Reporting Honor Roll To Local Paper, Citing Desire To Reduce Stress On Students

H.S. Halts Publication of Honor Roll Needham High Cites Stress On Students As Major Reason

NEEDHAM, Mass. -- Needham High School has abandoned its long-standing practice of publishing the names of students who make the honor roll in the local newspaper.

Principal Paul Richards said a key reason for stopping the practice is its contribution to students' stress level in "This high expectations-high-achievement culture."

The proposal to stop publishing the honor roll came from a parent. Richards took the issue before the school council, which approved it. Parents were notified of the decision last month. Richards said he received about 60 responses from both parents and students and the feedback has been evenly split for and against.


Richards said publishing of the honor roll represented "an unhealthy focus on grades." He pointed out that there are lots of other ways that students achieve, such as in clubs, musicals, concerts, athletics and community service.

He said the ranking of students solely based on grades goes against the school's overall mission which is to "promote learning."

Um, wow. So why bother? The only reason kids would want to work on grades is for scholarships...and that's it. Many have no reason to even try.

I like the last two paragraphs..."an unhealthy focus on grades" followed by the mission to "promote learning." Grades are supposed to be indicators of learning...not random numbers. Why on earth do you hide achievement? Just because someone else is better? One of the lessons of "Real Life" is that there's *ALWAYS* someone better. Live with it and move on. This type of decision bugs me because it removes lessons learned from high school and places it higher in the chain...thus you have people with unrealistic expectations. As my dad always said:
"kids go through life thinking it's like Barney...when they grow up, they find out it's like Jurassic Park."


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