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MAKING THE GRADE: WCCS seeks fairness in grade system

July 22, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — An effort to be fair to all students led Whitley County Consolidated Schools Board of Trustees to discuss valedictorians and possible changes to its grade-weighting system.

Superintendent Dr. Pat O’Connor said she would like to propose the Board of Trustees make a motion to eliminate increased grade weights for Advanced Placement (AP) courses.

While brainstorming this issue, some on the board said the designations of valedictorian and salutatorian have created a great deal of trouble, possibly more than either is worth.

“I have heard of some schools that have done away with class rankings,” said board member Jill Western. “They think valedictorian and salutatorian have become passe. There is such ridiculous competitiveness sometimes, and we have had to split hairs some years (figuring out who earned the honors).”

The superintendent noted some districts have done away with those rankings, while others might have as many as 20 valedictorians. She said research was required before such a decision is made.

“Maybe we should look at that,” said Board Vice-President Tim Bloom. “Maybe the time has passed for valedictorians and salutatorians.”

Board member Bill Tucker asked if these schools did away with rankings entirely, or just the designations for the top two.

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