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ERIC Number: EJ916326
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Feb
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-1529-8957
The Grades Game
Fleenor, Andy; Lamb, Sarah; Anton, Jennifer; Stinson, Todd; Donen, Tony
Principal Leadership, v11 n6 p48-52 Feb 2011
It can be quite alarming (and eye-opening) to see exactly how many of the grades students receive are based on their behaviors rather than their learning. Students should be assessed on what they know and can use rather than on their behavior. The reality, unfortunately, is that the opposite is often the case. Grades for students who work hard are frequently inflated, and when performance is essential, such as on high-stakes assessments, students fall short and use the excuse that they are poor test takers. Also, although grades that are based on behaviors reward the hardworkers and those students who are forever compliant, they punish students who have yet to figure out how to "do school." To alleviate this inequity, schools must change their grading practices. Fortunately, one simple change is all that is needed to start the ball rolling. In sports, players have to go through a well-known sequence: practice, scrimmage, game. Practice occurs regularly for players to hone their skills and improve flaws in their game. They receive individual as well as group instruction, and failures are learning experiences. In scrimmages, game conditions are mimicked and players get the opportunity to apply what they learned in practices in a game situation. In scrimmages, players show improvement--or don't. Although their performance might affect their playing time, the results ultimately don't affect the team. In the game, all the practicing and scrimmaging time is drawn upon, and the team lines it up for real. The result is final, and the performance is generally analyzed and evaluated and used when developing practices in the future. This article describes how a a similar model will work for academics. (Contains 2 figures.)
National Association of Secondary School Principals. 1904 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191-1537. Tel: 800-253-7746; Tel: 703-860-0200; Fax: 703-620-6534; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A