The grade gap

L and K students should receive equal grade points for equal work

The grade gap

Photo by: Miranda Duncan

Story by: Miranda Duncan, Copy Editor

The current GPA system rewards students in upper-level courses with the option for seven points towards their GPA and L-level students with only six points. The district should ensure that both L and K core classes receive the same GPA points to ensure students of all learning capabilities can earn credit for their effort in classes.

The grade point separation between L and K courses adds unnecessary competition and stigma into already challenging student academics. Many students feel pressured to take K-level courses to improve their academic standing, but because of the variation in high school curriculums around the country, colleges do not specifically consider L and K labels during the application process, only AP and Dual Credit, making the stress and competition unnecessary after high school.

Student academic ability varies greatly, meaning some students can succeed in K-level classes, while others struggle in L-level classes. Some argue that students in L and K classes should earn different grade points because of the belief K-level students work harder. However, most students in both L and K-level classes work with the same effort, just in courses more suited to their individual potential.

The difference in GPA credits pressures students to take upper-level classes to maintain their GPA without regards to their own abilities, which often results in students struggling to understand curriculum not suited for them. If both L and K classes receive the same points, students can choose to take curriculums based on their own capabilities and ability to learn the information and not based on the academic pressure to compete with upper-level students.
Giving L and K students different grade points increases student stress and prevents many students from taking classes suited to them for the sake of earning a higher GPA.The district should give students in L and K core classes the same grade point to count towards their GPA, but still offer higher points for students in Dual Credit and Advanced Placement courses, because of the increased difficulty and unique curriculums of college-level classes.