While not everyone is a supporter of the practice, grade check is a system that either works for students or doesn’t work at all. Students occasionally have trouble with staying on top of their work due to other circumstances along with this.
“Sometimes it’s just impossible for me to stay off of grade check simply because of school work and home life-so there’s a lot of factors going into it,” says Senior Elizabeth Ward.
In Helix, grade check is a system that affects practically everyone. It’s a rather simple concept; if someone gets two D’s or an F, they’re put on grade check. From there, they must go into a designated room during their lunch break and work at raising their grade. In order to do this, they can do assignments they need to finish or catch up on. As soon as they’ve gotten all their grades to a 75% or higher, they may either wait until the next grade check to get out or acquire a release form. In order to put the release form to use, though, they must get all of their teacher’s signatures.
While this definitely seems like a good process to students and teachers alike, there are still downsides. While some people excel in their studies, many others tend to struggle with them. Despite trying their best, they still end up on grade check, no matter what. Senior Elizabeth Ward says, “Even though you’ve been trying everything you can, you may not be an academically gifted student- and so, you end up in there often, which I’d say hinders some people.”
This isn’t to say that grade check only has downsides. Grade check may motivate students who participate in sports to do better. It may inspire them to get their grades up, which looks rather promising from a GPA standpoint.
Many people, especially the students who are affected, tend to question why grade check is in place. “There needed to some incentive to get their grades up,” said Helix Principal/Superintendent Darrick Cope.
In the late 1990’s, some students had been failing rather often, so the school board decided to step in. Implementing the policy has proved to work out rather well, as most students nowadays are passing their classes, avoiding the grade check consequences altogether.
On the other side, however, some students do struggle with grade check itself.
“Some days I just can’t focus so I can’t get my school work in; that’s really difficult,” said Ward. On top of this, all teachers have different ways of grading and expectations of their students. Students don’t always have assignments to finish, though. They must find some other way to occupy their time since they don’t have other work to do.
Grade check has been a part of our school system for the past 20 years. While the policy isn’t perfect, it still shapes our school and its environment. This process could always be improved upon. “I think it’s a good idea, it just isn’t executed very well,” said Ward.
Grade check is a policy that has shaped Griswold High into what it is today. While some could argue that it’s unfair or unimportant, one thing is for certain; the Helix grade check policy won’t be dismissed by the school board any time soon.