Sunday 30 June 2013

Hot Topic: Being Forced to Pass Students

While I can see the pros and cons of grading on a curve, some people take this a step further and are being asked to pass students. Sometimes there are good reasons and sometimes there aren't. Some of the excuses I've heard for passing students that should otherwise fail are:
  • it'll set back their therapy
  • they or their family recently went through a crisis
  • their family donates a lot of money to the school
  • the school wants to have a high graduation rate
Obviously the first two are understandable, nonetheless, crises or therapy shouldn't mean that students can simply slack off and expect to pass. Personal circumstances should be taken into account, but there must also be a way to catch the student up to the class. The last two examples are pretty pathetic, but time and time again I've seen it happen. Hopefully when teachers are considering whether to pass or fail a student they take a variety of factors into account.


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