3 exponential points

The terrors of the seven point scale

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3 exponential points

Ally Schilmoeller, Senior Design Editor

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The seven point scale. 93-100 is a 1. 85-92 is a two. For eight years the seven point scale has been crushing the hopes and dreams of students here at Elkhorn South. Students watch in agony as a single sub-par quiz or test drops their grade down to the brink of terror. A 92. There is nothing worse than finishing a quarter only half a percentage away from a one.  


Especially at the end of semester, with finals controlling from 1/10 to ⅕ of your semesters grade, the 7 point scale is a source of extreme stress. While the 7 point scale is meant to challenge students and push them toward academic success. It often pushes hardworking and studious students to the verge of a mental breakdown. Everyone wants a good grade but the 7 point scale makes it so much harder to keep grades up.


With colleges looking at students GPA’s and offering scholarships for grades, high school years are a constant struggle. Students pour over their textbooks for hours, spending all their free-time working for a 1. Some of this stress could be relieved by having a ten point scale. Also, students would have time to be kids and enjoy more time with friends, or playing a sport, or simply pursuing a passion. Instead, students are stuck inside studying into the wee hours of the night fighting for perfection and feeling useless when they finish the year with a bad grade.


Whether it be their high expectations or their parents expectations, most students strain themselves trying to measure up to their peers in other states that are blessed with a more standard 10 point scale using A’s and B’s. When I talk to friends of family in other states they are baffled when I say I have a one in English class. I explain to them that a 1 is, in fact, an A, but the oddness that is our grade system still  them puzzles them.


Having 3% gap from the majority of schools in the nations from what could be a one or two is a big deal. When comparing students of different school districts, it is hardly fair that students attending schools with a 10 scale have such an advantage.


All in all, the seven point scale is nothing more that an added stress to high schoolers. It raises already high expectations and differentiates students grades from their peers across the country.