Changing the grading scale proves to be challenging task

Cassie Bauer

Every Marian girl knows the feeling of having a grade stuck at 92.4% at the end of the semester. That .1% is the difference between receiving an A and a B in the class and students will give anything to get that extra boost.

Although these attempts at raising their grade are usually fruitless, Marian administration’s recent decision to adjust the grading scale will provide Marian students with that extra boost so often desired.

After extensive research and collaboration with the Omaha Archdiocese, administration confirmed their decision to implement a new grading scale to go into effect next school year. In order to achieve the best outcome for all Marian students, countless hours have been spent deliberating and perfecting this new scale.

E-learning coordinator for the Omaha Archdiocese, Mrs. Sara Hood, explains Omaha’s unique situation saying, “the Omaha metro does not follow the national pattern where the entire city generally follows the same scale. In Omaha it is different across the board. Almost every district calculates it differently.”

When collecting information in regards to grading scales, Hood says they took into account “the handbooks of 95 schools in different metro areas across the country to see what the norm was for those handbooks.”

Marian’s decision to adjust the current grading scale was also inspired by other high schools in the state of Nebraska after conversations with the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.

“Each high school in Omaha uses a different grading scale and every college uses a different system when awarding scholarship money,” Principal Mrs. Susie Sullivan said. “Some college have very specific rules such as a minimum ACT score and GPA. Other colleges have a range of scores they use to award scholarships.”

“As colleges have put less emphasis on ACT scores, in some instances the GPA carries more weight. An adjustment to our grading scale was necessary due to university practices,” Sullivan said.

This change will provide Marian students with more equitable opportunities compared to other high schools across the region.

Assistant Principal, Mrs. Jen Christen, describes this issue saying, “girls who were taking similar course work, such as an AP course, which has a standard curriculum, could have a feeling of having a grade stuck different grade and weight depending on the high school they attend across the country. We wanted our students to be in contention for all scholarship money available to them.”

The change to the GPA can potentially lead to more scholarship opportunities depending on the policies of the University. Sullivan reminds students that “Marian has high expectations for our students and know they graduate prepared for college no matter their GPA.”

Marian believes that after implementing these changes, students will be provided with a more accurate measure of academic success. More importantly, changes to the overall grade point averages will enhance student profiles during the college application process.

This new change has Marian students excited for the next school year. Junior Madison Terranova describes her excitement saying, “I am really looking forward to the change. I think that it will make classes a lot less stressful for Marian students, particularly the ones who take the AP and honors classes.”

Marian is adamant about producing the best result for each student, so a definite decision has not yet been made. Despite this, they continue to work towards a decision and believe that a final decision will be made shortly.


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