Should the BCHS grading scale be changed?



Hand completing a multiple choice exam.

Belle deCastro

The grading scale at BCHS has been a debate for a lot of students. While friends or relatives who go to different schools may have a less demanding 10 point grading scale, the BCHS grading scale requires much more of the students’ time and efforts to maintain their grades. Despite a difference in scales when entering college, BCHS still abides by this competitive scale.

The grading scale at BCHS has been described as “hard” by senior Lucy Park. An A is any grade above a 94 percent, and an A- is a 93 percent. A B is any grade above an 86 percent, and a B- is an 85 percent. A C is any grade above a 76 percent, and a C- is a 75 percent. A D is any grade above a 71 percent, and a D- is a 70. This leaves anything above a 70 percent as an F.

On the contrary, at most public schools and colleges, they use a less-demanding 10 point grading scale. An A is any grade above a 90 percent. A B is any grade above an 80 percent. A C is any grade above a 70 percent. A D is any grade above a 60 percent. An F is any grade that lies below a 60 percent. This scale is strikingly different than the scale at BCHS.

BCHS’ grading scale considers an A between a 94 and 100 percent, and an F anything below a 70 percent. Additionally, different points are awarded to a GPA depending on the level of the class.

“The grading scale is reflection of the rigorous education at BCHS,” said vice principal of academics Mrs. Ann Taylor. Whether it be a percentage or a letter grade, the grading scale is in place and is meant to be a “reflective check” for the students according to Mrs. Taylor. “It sets a high expectation of academic success.”

Junior Kim Bowers believes that BCHS should use the 10 point grading scale. “It is the scale most colleges and public schools use anyways. We should all be held at the same standard,” said Bowers.

She also said that in her AP Language class, english teacher Mrs. Jackie Bach adjusts semester grades to the 10 point grading scale because her class is supposed to mirror a rigorous college class. “It helps me know what grade I would receive if I were to take a class like this in college,” added Bowers.

However, Mrs. Taylor said that there is a lot of curving and modification in college grades. “It does not mean we need to match the college’s grading scale. There is always modification in how they structure their grades,” said Mrs. Taylor.

While Bowers advocates for a change in the scale, freshman Patrick Countryman believes otherwise. “I think the grading scale is fine the way it is,” Coming from St. Pius X where the grading scale is equally challenging, Countryman is used to it. “The smaller ranging grading scale benefits us because it teaches students to work harder and it holds students to higher standards,” Countryman said.

Though opinions over this grading scale debate continue, it is unlikely that any changes will happen. Mrs. Taylor said, “The grading scale is designed to open a conversation between the student and the teacher.”