No Zero Grading Policy

The Controversy of the “No Zero” Grading Policy

Essential Question: Does giving learners no lower than a 50 percent as an overall grade, even when they have not done anything, helping or hurting the learner?

In a few states, the no zero grading policy has been making some tremendous waves.

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Teachers and parents have been wondering if this policy really helps the child or does it hinder. The district leaders have said it gives students “a chance” to succeed but does it really?  Hmmm, inquiring minds would like to know.

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I think the grievance that teachers have, is if a student does absolutely nothing in their classes, the student would still receive a 50 percent as an overall grade instead of what they truly deserved. This further supports their argument that if a student receives a 50 percent first quarter, then does enough in class to earn at least a “C” second quarter, and receives a passing grade on the final exam, they could still pass the class with at least a “C”. This fact enrages some teachers for many different reasons.

Reason 1 – Students are receiving credit for doing absolutely nothing.

Reason 2 – This is not preparing students for reality because community colleges, and universities STILL give students what they really earn, not a 50 percent for doing nothing.  

Reason 3 – When a student enters the workplace, they will receive feedback based on their work performance and will not be given anything other than their work performance.

Reason 4 – How would it appear if teachers decided to work 50 percent of the day but STILL expected 100 percent pay? It would be safe to assume they would not have a career in their professional for very long.

The other thing to consider is that there are cases where students still do not pass the class after receiving a 50 percent, so the no-zero policy is not always a win-win situation for learners.

In retrospect, it is about principle

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Giving a grade without having to earn it is an ethical issue because it essentially is saying that it is ok to do nothing and still receive something.

For example, a student that earns a 53 percent by actually turning in work, while another does nothing and earns a 50 percent.

Does this seem ethical? By doing this, is our educational system preparing learners to go as further or preparing them to only go as far as their true intellect?

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As education moves forward, what will happen if this no zero grading policy continues? Will it help or hurt our learners? Will it create the Dunning-Kruger Effect in some of these students, where they feel more qualified than they really are?

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Giving a grade without expecting work, is like giving a cart without wheels. The cart itself may seem like a beneficial resource at the time, but without the wheels it will become more difficult to use as it becomes full. 

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So does giving learners no lower than a 50 percent as an overall grade, even when they have not done anything, helping or hurting the learner? 

Just food for thought
Life is too precious to remain stuck in an unpleasant story, so go ahead and close that story book and began a new one. ~Kamina Fitzgerald
Have a peep at my Books On Kindle or Paperback! 
Schoolspiration
The Value of Career and Technical Education in Addressing College and Career Readiness  and the Ill-Prepared Workforce
Bumperstuckle Village: Patience is a Virtue
Dangers of Vaping

VAPE Education: Is Your Child Vaping?

Although Vaping is considered a recent trend, it definitely is not new. Vaping began in Ancient Egypt when they used hot stones to vape herbs, and later evolved into the first “shisha” when introduced in India. (Also known as Hookah)

These practices led to the invention of vaping as we know it today. In 1927, Joseph Robinson came up with the idea of e-cigarettes but later in 1963, Herbert Gilbert made vaping popular with his “non-tobacco smokeless” cigarette.

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The Chinese Firm, Hon Lik, created the first e-cigarette in the mid-2000s. While this may of sounded like a great alternative to smoking regular tobacco products, it was not. And as the ole adage says, when something seems too good to be true it usually is.

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I would like to share Seven Truths about vaping that I learned from HopkinsMedicine.org as well as from my experience as a high school educator.

TRUTH #1 There are Vape Products that look like Flash-drives

Parents, Teachers and Guardians, please be aware that there are vape devices that go undetected because they look like flash-drives, lighters, and other regular items. These vapes can be charged in a computer and can appear as a flash-drive. If unsure of what to look for, do a quick search on vape devices like Juul and other vape alternatives. https://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2018/5/1/17286638/juul-vaping-e-cigarette

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TRUTH #2 Vaping exposes you to fewer toxins than regular cigarettes.

Now, this does not mean to run out and start “vaping-it-up” it simply means there are “less” toxins, but not toxin-free. It’s like deciding between 1 cup of strychnine or a pinch of strychnine, neither one is a good idea.

TRUTH #3 Vaping is not good for your health

Nicotine is the primary agent in both regular cigarettes and e-cigarettes and is highly addictive. It causes users to crave smoking and suffer withdrawals if they do not smoke. Nicotine also spikes adrenaline and raises blood pressure, increasing the likelihood of having a heart attack.

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TRUTH #4 The Chemicals that make up the Vapes are Unknown

There are many unknowns when it comes to vaping. Most importantly, it is unknown how it will affect physical health over a long term period of time. It is still modern so those utilizing it currently are the guinea pigs.

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TRUTH #5 E-cigarettes are just as Addictive as Traditional Cigarettes

E-cigarettes still contain Nicotine just like the regular cigarettes and has been described as addictive as heroine or cocaine. Also smokers have the option to purchase extra-strength cartridges, which contain a high concentration of nicotine. The voltage on the e-cigarette can also increase the amount of substance smoked as well.

Truth #6 Electronic Cigarettes are not the best tool to use to quit Smoking

While e-cigarettes have been marketed as a way to quit smoking, it has not yet received the Food and Drug Administration approval as a smoking cessation device. A study by Smokefree.gov has found that e-cigarettes lead to continuing to smoke both electronic and regular cigarettes. Does not this defeat the original purpose?

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TRUTH #7 A new Generation is Getting Hooked on Nicotine

Among the youth, e-cigarettes are more popular than traditional tobacco products. Back in 2015, the U.S. Surgeon General reported that e-cigarettes had increased by 900 percent and 40 percent of the young users had never tried traditional tobacco products. Imagine how much that has increased since then.

As an educator in the high school setting, I can verify this claim is true. Back in 2015, most students were curious about vaping because it was marketed as tobacco free and “safe” to use. Since that time, high schoolers have started carrying vapes around that look like flash-drives and other regular items. I posted a picture of these in TRUTH #1.

For this reason parents and guardians must be proactive by not being afraid to check your child’s book-bags, dressers and so on; there is no such thing as “privacy” when it comes to your child’s well-being. Since this smoking phenomenal, I have seen a lot of high school athletes experiencing heart attacks related to smoking (vapes, cigarettes, weed etc…) and it is disheartening because they were so young. There is a strong link between smoking and cardiovascular health, and smoking and cancer. The sooner it is discovered that a child has a habit, the sooner they can receive the help they need. Do not let this happen, be a snoop.

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Life is too precious to remain stuck in an unpleasant story, so go ahead and close that story book and began a new one. ~Kamina Fitzgerald
Have a peep at my Books On Kindle or Paperback! 
Schoolspiration
The Value of Career and Technical Education in Addressing College and Career Readiness  and the Ill-Prepared Workforce
Bumperstuckle Village: Patience is a Virtue

 

EOG, EOC, Advice, Parent, Teacher, Students

Teacher and Parents: What to do when Instructional Time is lost.

Teachers and Parents: What to do when Instructional Time is lost.

Teachers: Create a plan to strategically cover material student are weak in (based on data) and/or material that is high priority that you have not had an opportunity to cover.

Parents: Provide support by making sure students are taking at least fifteen minutes a day or so, to read over review material.

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When time is loss, I suggest first, going to the test specs for the state course exams and identifying the highest priority, priority and low priority standards. Test specs typically list these by percentage.

English III Example:

English III Test Specs

If this is your test specs, the highest priority would be Reading for Literature, priority would be Reading for Informational Text and Language would be a low priority. Next to the domain is the standards. If you have a short time to cover a lot of material, you would need to go to your testing bank, and select ALL of the questions from the “Standards” listed next to the domain/topic.

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The Review Assignment 

Using the Highest Priority, and Priority framework, go into your test bank, it will vary depending on where you live, and chose the specific standards that were represented, and create an assessment.

Save the assessment as a PDF or Word Document, then highlight the correct answers.

Next, provide instructions at the top of the sheet for students stating they have to complete two items per question in order to receive full credit for each question.

The Two Items

First, they had to identify and define any key term/person/event listed in the question.

Second, they needed to give a brief explanation on why the answer is correct, based on the concept of the question.

Example:

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**Again, this review could take up to three class days depending on the amount of questions you choose but you would be able to cover a lot of material while providing students with a study guide! 

It is a little rigorous but will allow students to read through and research the standards that have not covered. During the time in class, teacher would be free to catch up on things while being available for any questions students may have in case they come across something they don’t understand.

In conclusion, parents, if a teacher should send material home over break, it would be great if you could make sure your precious child is reviewing the material, so that it would remain fresh in their minds!

Merry Christmas!

Have a peep at my Books On Kindle or Paperback! 
Schoolspiration
The Value of Career and Technical Education in Addressing College and Career Readiness  and the Ill-Prepared Workforce
Bumperstuckle Village: Patience is a Virtue
Life is too precious to remain stuck in an unpleasant story, so go ahead and close that story book and began a new one. ~Kamina Fitzgerald
The Beginning...

The Journey Begins

Thanks for joining me!

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

1295339-Jim-Stovall-Quote-Education-is-a-lifelong-journey-whose

Have a peep at my Books On Kindle or Paperback! 
Schoolspiration
The Value of Career and Technical Education in Addressing College and Career Readiness  and the Ill-Prepared Workforce