In the essay, “What Our Education System Needs is More If’s”, Singleton suggests that educators should embrace the grade letter F Instead of adopting a system of leniency that allows a student to not fully master his assignments and still obtain the opportunity to pass his grade level. The author feels that by adopting a black and white grading system, awarding students who meet academic standards and presenting If’s to those who don’t, will call the attention of students, parents, and teachers.
He doesn’t claim that giving out If’s by the dozens presents a solution, but e feels that handing out FSP sends out a message and draws a starting line towards a more active and responsible education system. Singleton Identifies the lack of student motivation, the absent parent involvement In education, and poor teaching skills as results of America’s poor education system. Singleton identifies several factors which result in our poor education system and due to an unstable grading system, students have become more reliant on a teacher’s leniency with grades rather than mastering the material being taught.
This system allows students to breeze by grade levels with little to no effort thus encouraging a student’s lack of motivation. As stated In Singleton’s essay, “Come to class and get your CSS. Laugh at my jokes and take home Bi’s. ” The grading scale today is highly manipulated. From personal experience, I have witnessed students miss school day after day and still receive the same diploma as I did by graduation. How can this be when the students didn’t even attend class or complete assignments?
Teachers “baby” their students by allowing them to receive undeserved grades and allowing them to move forth with their education even though they do not qualify to proceed to the next grade level. When this leniency Is taken away, students can react one of two ways. A student who does not want to fail and has relied on this grading system from time to time, will strap down and set aside the time to master the material thoroughly. A student who is completely dependent on a lenient grading system will more than likely not put forth any effort and drop out of school.
As stated in the author’s essay, there will be no college students with the Inability to read. A poor education system contributes to poor parent Involvement In their children’s education. As a chain reaction of the previous factor, an unstable grading system sakes it hard to identify if a child is struggling in school. Progress reports show grades sufficient enough to not require parental attention, leading the parents to believe that their child/children do not require academic support when in reality the grades have been manipulated, creating an unrealistic and false report.
Now a student’s lack of motivation has resulted In parent’s absence In their education. If progress reports were graded accordingly, then the students who “earned” FSP would be taking home red flags, so to speak. Singleton doesn’t expect every parent to notice, are, or take any action, but as far as concerned parents go, parents may have more influence on their child than a teacher would, on that same individual, as their student. Granted, the parents may receive the same results and the student may still lack motivation, but an effort would have been made nonetheless. O be less than satisfactory themselves then as a result, the students will reflect the same. As mentioned in the essay, some educators should never have been certified in the first place. Instructors lacking in performance and the desire to teach find methods to simplify their Job. These methods contribute to our poor educating system and unstable grading criteria. Students are taught basic material and then graded inappropriately to avoid delays in the curriculum. This form of teaching provides an injustice to the students who continue their education only to find that they are inadequately prepared.
Teachers should take the responsibility if their students are not advancing in their students. If’s should be handed out appropriately and a review of the material should be in order to better assure that students can understand the lesson. Similar to students, teachers can also lack motivation and hose who do should seek another profession instead of hindering their students. I agree with Singleton and his proposition to hand out If’s by the hundreds, thousands and even millions. To me, this method is taking it back to the basics.
He makes it very clear that this method will not solve all the problems found in the education system, but he believes that it has the ability to send a message that cannot be mistaken. The grading scale provides a black and white system which labels as follows: A- excellent, B- good, C-average, D-below average, F-fail. It should not be manipulated by any means necessary. These letter grades are meant to revived feedback on a student’s performance and manipulating grades, manipulates a student’s progress.
With the economy being the way that it is, I believe that it is in everyone’s best interest to possess the ability to learn and prosper in the real world where no compassion will be given. Students should have the drive to work for their grades, parents should support and encourage their children to achieve good grades, and teachers must have the willingness to teach and tell it how it is. If a student deserves an F, then it should be addressed accordingly. Even if this method doesn’t provide a definite solution, it’s a step forward.