Face Off: Retain letter grades for this quarter

Ashlynn Bakemeyer

Ashlynn Bakemeyer

Ashlynn Bakemeyer, Reporter

While it is obvious that COVID-19 has ripped its way through everyone’s lives at the worst possible time, the best thing right now is to have regulation. Keeping all semester grades for spring as letter grades would help establish a form of normalcy.

Several universities have turned to pass/fail or credit/no credit systems that have not been seen since the protests during the Vietnam War.

While there are valid reasons that schools have started to favor the pass/fail system, this could be problematic for high school resumes. Having a pass mark instead of a distinct letter grade could hurt the overall value of a student’s resume.

Another disadvantage of having a pass/fail system is directed at the students who are still working to the best of their abilities. There are students who face the difficult situation that COVID-19 has caused and are still putting the same amount of effort – if not more — into the eLearning work that they would invest into a typical school day. Enforcing a pass/fail grading system would not show the effort that a hardworking student has put into the work, even through the unprecedented inconvenience.

If the pass/fail system was used instead of the normal letter grades, it could provide an easy way for students to check out early for summer. While this may not seem too detrimental at the time, coming back to school in August (hopefully) after slacking on schoolwork since late March would not be the best way to approach a new school year.

Although the pass/fail system would be beneficial to students directly affected by COVID-19, initiating even a small form of a routine from before the outbreak can have a positive impact on students mentally. Keeping letter grades instead of switching to a pass/fail system would do just that.