Public schools

San Diego Public Schools Will Overhaul Its Grading System To Achieve 'Anti-Racism'

"If we’re actually going to be an anti-racist school district, we have to confront practices like this that have gone on for years and years."

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San Diego's public schools want to be anti-racist, so they're…abolishing the traditional grading system?

"This is part of our honest reckoning as a school district," San Diego Unified School District Vice President Richard Barrera told a local NBC affiliate. "If we're actually going to be an anti-racist school district, we have to confront practices like this that have gone on for years and years."

District officials evidently believe that the practice of grading students based on their average score is racist, and that an active effort to dismantle racism necessitates a learning environment free of the pressure to turn in assignments on time. As evidence for the urgency of these changes, the district released data showing that minority students received more Ds and Fs than white students: Just 7 percent of whites received failing grades, as opposed to 23 percent of Native Americans, 23 percent of Hispanics, and 20 percent of black students.

Under the new system, students will not be penalized for failing to complete assignments, and teachers will give them extra opportunities to demonstrate mastery of subjects. The grades they receive upon completion of a course will no longer reflect their average test and assignment scores. "Common grading practices such as averaging a student's grade over time can disadvantage students who started the year behind grade level and can discredit the progress a student has made, experts have said," noted The San Diego Union Tribune.

The new approach—which is rather confusingly written—still includes letter grades, but these will reflect student's "mastery" of the subject rather than their completion of homework, quizzes, and tests. What constitutes mastery is left unexplained. Grades "shall not be influenced by behavior or factors that directly measure students' knowledge and skills in the content area," which sounds like a recipe for highly subjective grading. And a great deal of leniency will now be given to students who don't do the work for a course, including those who don't show up at all: Attendance can no longer be a factor in grading.

In any case, ending these kinds of grades doesn't actually eliminate the underlying inequities that produced the disparate Fs. It may actually cover those inequities up: Given that grades are a tool for evaluating students' progress, the district is essentially announcing that it will no longer gather as much evidence about the negative social phenomena it would probably like to address. Better grades do not mean students will suddenly have a better grasp of the material. They certainly won't be better prepared for college (where traditional grades are very much still a thing).

Indeed, this comes perilously close to addressing poverty by no longer tallying the number of homeless people—or, to use a timely example, President Donald Trump's frustration that increasing COVID-19 testing will make the epidemic look worse. Coronavirus cases exist even if they go undetected; similarly, minority students who are falling behind their classmates will be falling behind even if their teachers aren't giving them Fs.

Eliminating grades and standardized testing has become something of a crusade for California progressives. California's public universities, for instance, announced earlier this year that they would no longer require applicants to take either the SAT, a measure on which white students have historically outperformed others. But this elides a serious problem for minority students: Other admissions criteria—such as legacy considerations and extracurricular activities—favor privileged applicants even more dramatically than grades and tests do. The wealthiest (and usually whitest) students have better access to résumé-padding activities; yes, they can also hire tutors and take test prep courses, but there's only so much extra value to be extracted from these things.

At present, San Diego schools are only open for a handful of special-needs students. What district kids need most of all is probably a return to normalcy, as soon as possible. An experimental system that eliminates year-end letter grades seems like an especially bad idea for the current moment.

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  1. So they plan to be racist to combat racism. OK only on the left coast in America do “anti-racists” treat brown people as less capable, slower and needing more time. Much like “anti-fascists” use actual fascist tactics from the 20th century to spread fear and sow distrust in order to gain more power.

    1. Anti-thing = thing.

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    2. only on the left coast in America do “anti-racists” treat brown people as less capable, slower and needing more time

      To be fair they do claim the mantle of science, and science supports this. Blacks are still persistently a full standard deviation below average in IQ after 4 centuries in America and 1.5 centuries since the end of slavery.

      1. Blacks?

        1. The population of people with black skin who reside in the United States. Clear enough, or do you need it a little simpler?

          1. I don’t think this is the case for some African immigrants. Nigerian immigrants who come here go to school and obtain professional positions. This is true for black immigrants from some other regions.

            It’s not being black, it’s belonging to a U.S culture that says only Democrats can make my life whole. And they wait for Godot, year after year after year. But progressives love them because they keep voting for the same people that tell them there are racists hiding in every corner and only we can fix that (even though the numbers say otherwise).

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            2. “Humans have an average IQ of 100.”

              “But that’s not true for Albert Einstein!”

            3. They be on the government plantation now.

              The civil rights leaders of the 50s and sixties are rolling in their graves.

      2. Ok, 2.5 of those centuries they were primarily chattel slaves and were second class citizens for another century after that. I’m not saying that CRT is the solution, just pointing out that the reason for any disparity is not likely to be genetic.

        1. Slavery was wicked, but it caused ignorance, not a decline in intelligence. And no, I do not believe black skinned people are less intelligent than anyone else. I do not believe Asians are a lot more intelligent than anyone else. I do believe culture and education play into this, but lowering standards for everyone will not improve ignorance, only foster more ignorance.

          1. Exactly and it is called the soft bigotry of low expectations (and of course, the reliability of U.S. black to keep voting for those who promote the soft bigotry of low expectations).

        2. What of the millennium prior to the Atlantic slave trade, when the could have had a Renaissance, like Europe? Or the period before than, when the America’s were inhabited by great empires of indigenous people? Or the millennium before that, when Asia and the mid-east had established major trade routes and scientific growth?

          For all of human history, Africa has been backward and its inhabitants less capable, before and after Atlantic slavery,

          It’s silly to pretend that their descendants living in Africa, Europe, and North America are working with equal capacity as other groups.

          None of it’s the fault of slavery.

          1. Um, is Egypt no longer a thing?
            Egypt had math (geometry), science, advanced engineering, advanced (for the time) medical techniques, and institutions of learning while most of Europe was still living in huts.

          2. Africa lacks navigable waterways, isolating it from trade with the rest of the world, which carries with it the advancements of civilization.

      3. So why not assign blame to the people running education?? They are the ones failing the children.
        OOH, that’s right, they are all progressive democrats, so nothing can be done to improve education for the inner cities. Too bad.
        Imagine that the teachers from the 3 best schools in a large city were traded for the teachers from the 3 worst schools…….maybe then we can stop pretending that teacher quality is fine and does not affect the quality of education.
        Insanity is to continue doing the same, (or worse) and expect that suddenly things will get better.
        Vote democrat, it is insane!, but very popular among the poor.

      4. cience supports this

        what they cLAIM is science does not support this, and what supports this is NOT science.
        Get a clue… this is marxism at its finest, coming to a school district near you. Or, more likely, its already there and you are just oblivious to it.

        There ARE, and have been, schools with most ly black sudents who are at least a standard ddeviation, on average, bove the white kids in more ‘normal” districts. So it ain’t based on race. Its based on culture. Go bac and reread the percentages of the four “race” taht were analised. Blacks as agroup are NOT the lowest. That anes its not a result of “being black”. Or even being raised in a black cultural milieu.

        Part of what his farce is based upon is the standard IQ test.. which is more a teest to determine one’s al
        ingment with CULTURAL norms more than plain intellect. Gimme ten white kids and ten black kids, same age, and I can develop IQ tests that will make the black kids geniuses and the white kids dummies, and vice versa. Those IQ tests are STRONGLY based on cultural norms.

      5. How about in other countries?

        Experienced a real eye opener a few years back when we hired an African who put our incumbent black staff to shame. They ostracized and rejected her. But, she persevered.

    3. As I’ve said before, the Klan had more faith in the capabilities of black folks than modern progressives do.

    4. I always thought whites bitching about reverse racism was stupid, cause not just calling it racism was conceding that you can’t be racist against white people (and therefore a racist belief). Very interesting that the lefties have embraced reverse racism as a policy plank.

      1. reverse racism IS affirmative action. Affirmative action IS reverse racism.
        Both are contra Civil Rights laws. WHY dont these eedjits “get it”? Cuz they are subversives.

    5. The soft bigotry of low expectations.

      1. ^Yup. That one.
        Raise everyone up by lowering the bar and expectations for performance. Should provide a great foundation for the next generation of workers. ‘There’s no need to actually complete the job I asked you to do. That would be racist.’

        1. ^lol… Best comment yet, “There’s no need to actually complete the job I asked you to do. That would be racist.”

        2. That is very funny and very sad…

      2. I have a new term for that phenomenon. I call it “systemic racism”.

        I’ve been hearing that phrase for years, as lefturds tried to convince me that Republicans were standing in the way of economic elevation of minorities, but the fact is that it’s the Democrats’ desire to keep them as sharecroppers for votes that kneecaps the poor in the USA.

        -jcr

        1. When you are harvesting most of the Black vote, why change what you are doing….they will vote for promises, no need for actual results!

    6. OK only on the left coast in America do “anti-racists” treat brown people as less capable, slower and needing more time.

      No, plenty of it on the east coast, too. You find it wherever “those people” racists live.

    7. They’re not saying brown people are actually less capable, just that we’ve been measuring their ability wrong. And that every time and way it’s measured it comes out wrong.

    8. It’s not racism it’s the three e’s
      Ebonics
      Ebonomics
      Ebonmatics
      Ebonstory
      I know that’s old style 4 but completely permissible with the new ways.

    9. only on the left coast in America do “anti-racists” treat brown people as less capable, slower and needing more time.

      On that note I am looking forward to the new methods of keeping score in those sports where brown people traditionally outperform such as Track and Field and Basketball.

      Also looking forward to having pilots and heart surgeons who can avoid the rigors of the meritocracy.

    10. So they plan to be racist to combat racism.

      Well, you know lefturds have a very limited set of ideas to draw from.

      -jcr

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    13. Exactly!

    14. I foresee the California school system breaking down at an accelerated rate, while home-schools, charter schools, and private schools grow in number.

      1. That ship sailed long ago.

      2. Only until the Kalifornia legislature outlaws all but public schools. Can’t have people making decisions about what school their kids go to.

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  2. I have mixed feelings about this. At the end of the day, the question is whether or not these kids are actually mastering the subject, so grading them based on that is important- rather than confirming that they did homework every night. If I’d had this system in place as a kid, I’d have aced every class right up until Junior year, when doing homework became key to actually mastering the subjects (because the format changed to read the material before class, and then discuss at school).

    And that really is the rub- if kids don’t learn how to put off gratification to study or complete assignments, they may master the subject, but they aren’t mastering key skills for life.

    Add to that the fact that I don’t trust AT ALL any tests purporting to demonstrate that a student mastered a subject. We spent 10 years after NCLB with teachers insisting that it was wrong to “Teach to the Test”. So instead we are going to have to trust the teachers when they say that a kids has or has not mastered the work.

    1. “but they aren’t mastering key skills for life.”

      Hi parents.

      1. None of which are taught in primary school anyhow.

        1. Sitting down and getting something you don’t like done is probably the most important life skill you can have. For the vast majority of people, this is taught in the form of arithmetic homework

          1. That skill is taught long before you see arithmetic.

            Or…it should have been.

          2. I think it was Jascha Heifitz, the virtuoso violinist, who said that he started every practice session with the exercises he hated the most. Only after would he play what he enjoyed.

            1. Discipline. Another idea going out the window.

        2. My first thought when I read an article about this the other day was that this will really prepare them for life where deadlines are a fact of life.

          So, what if the EMT’s take their time getting you to the hospital?

      2. Most likely, parent.

      3. Parents are for the privileged. Families are a regressive relic of a bygone era. Fathers are predatorial purveyors of toxic masculinity. The state is all the mommy you need.

    2. “Turning things in on time” is worth grading itself though. In the real world, my boss expects me to deliver things on a certain schedule. Showing up a week after the deadline with “I think I mastered it though” doesn’t work for him, nor should I expect it to.

      1. Don’t worry, Fat Mike. Somewhere out there is a well-meaning leftist fighting for you because he thinks he knows what’s best for you.

      2. Schedules and deadlines are constructs of racism and white supremacy

        1. They are part of future time orientation, which is racist.

      3. I was thinking the same thing. I was pretty young when I realized some people were smarter than me, and more importantly, I realized that actually putting in the hard work usually produced improved results. The world of work – in the real world – often “grades” us.

    3. Color me surprised as to the use the word “mastery” or any other variation on “master.” Seems awful un-woke.

      1. Lol! I’m sure you remember back in the 90s when LA County procurement asked disk drive manufacturers to stop referring to drives as “master” and “slave” because the terms were offensive. Personally, it had never once occurred to me to hear those terms that way until they brought it up since they were control systems terms and it was a whole lot of years since slavery. But, hey, racism! On the bright side, new drive interfaces eliminated the terminology so the silliness faded away.
        I’m also sure you’re aware that realtors are now avoiding “master suite” or “master bedroom” because it’s supposed to be offensive. Another case of where I never once connected the term to slavery or race. It’s getting quite tiresome.

    4. The Amish have it right. So little after 6th grade has much use for any but a small minority that it’s a waste of time. Of course, much of the time in the first few grades is baby-sitting and waiting for them to mature too.

      1. Well… The Amish have had their own ‘cancel culture’ for a very long time. Of course, when they shun someone, they don’t make a point of shouting it from the rooftops, though.

        -jcr

    5. If teachers were allowed to care enough to produce an equal outcome from education, then instead of fudging the grades they should be taking advantage of them. Test the students. Spend extra time with the students that the teacher failed to reach initially. Failing grades are the teacher’s fault, not the kid’s. I don’t blame the eggs if my omelet isn’t as fluffy as it should be!

    6. They want to get rid of standard tests and traditional grading standards because it allows for comparison of teachers and schools.

      It has nothing to do with the kids.

      It’s all about keeping state funding and maintaining the economics of the educational system with minimal oversight.

    7. “At the end of the day, the question is whether or not these kids are actually mastering the subject, so grading them based on that is important- rather than confirming that they did homework every night. ”

      Not really. I learned about the migratory patterns of caribou in the 4th grade or so. Can’t say that it has come in handy once.

      The primary skill children have to learn in schools is mastering themselves to diligently work. Getting the “right answer” happens in school, not life. In life, you have better and worse answers, and the skill you need is in applying yourself to improve the answer you need.

  3. Find any evidence that the untrustworthy Giuliani and Biden faked the Hunter Biden story? It’s been almost a week. Feel like familial corruption that implicates the Democratic candidate for president received kick backs from his son should warrant at least one article focusing on what the actual emails indicate instead of the one article we recieved on twitter and facebook censoring excuse me “hiding” the story.

    1. It’s not Reason’s job to do free campaign work for Donald Trump.

      1. Routing out corruption in government aids in pressing the message that government is the enemy of liberty.

        1. There has never been a government in the civilized world more corrupt than Trump’s.

          1. Hogwash. The administration of the previous teleprompter-in-chief, President Choom, exceeds it by orders of magnitude.
            -jcr

      2. Commie Reason commenters are for selling out the country to the CCP.

        Imagine my shock.

  4. minority students received more Ds and Fs than white students

    Are Asians not a minority anymore?

    1. Lacist!

    2. Not when it comes to academics. Asians in general are kind of like “Schrodinger’s Minority.” They are both a minority and not a minority depending on the situation.

      1. White adjacent. Above is adjacent, no?

        1. Next to or adjoining. In Geometry adjacent angles share a common vertex.
          A good word for this exercise.

      2. I like that. Clever observation.

      3. I’d like to see Asians get a lot more litigious with the SJW assholes who contrive asinine excuses for keeping them out of colleges.

        -jcr

    3. For the purposes of these “reformers,” Asians don’t exist anymore.

    4. Not in the UC system. Hats off to those who master the system and make the most of it.

  5. “Better grades do not mean students will suddenly have a better grasp of the material.”

    However, better grades will make students feel better. People that feel good do not riot.

    1. People who think they are smart but can’t do anything, still riot

      1. Right. Does no one remember the people from the Occupy movement who were angry at Wall Street because they couldn’t earn enough with their Masters degree in Puppeteering Arts?

    2. No, but having a grading system sets an expectation for students to aspire to. A teacher’s job is to help a student to the next tier, or to explore an interest that may not fall into a standard category. Giving students a pass on not meeting any expectation dumbs it down for everyone. Perhaps that is my systemic bias rearing its ugly head. My experience has shown me that when one raises the bar, the student will reach to try to get it, when it is put in reach or lowered, the average student is content to stay there.

    3. Better grades will make the teachers feel better too. They can bargain for big wage increases for better performance.

    4. Lax grading standards allows for continued growth of education bureaucracy with less oversight.

      Without a standard way to compare schools and teachers, there’s no way to really measure if tax money is well spent.

      It has nothing to do with the kids.

  6. Mastery…

    Wait… What?

    1. Now it all makes sense!

  7. .. necessitates a learning environment free of the pressure to turn in assignments on time.
    A practice their future employer will certainly appreciate.

    1. Doesn’t seem like they care.

    2. All the more reason to own the means of production, you can be your own boss and be as retarded as you want with no consequences!

      1. Then being able to meet deadlines is something your future customers will appreciate.

    3. Kicking the can down the road.

      1. It helps their university teachers union lobby for more funding for remedial courses.

    4. It will prepare them to work for the state government.

  8. R-A-C-I-S-T

    I only see two grade letters there. Why are these letterists excluding B, D, and F? Why was E excluded altogether in both systems? Do R, I, S, and T identify as the missing grade letters?

    1. D – A – C – E – B – F

      Squint really hard and you’ll see racist. Which is the underlying principle, oddly enough.

      1. That’s pretty good, nice work 🙂

  9. so they are now throwing darts at a board with grades randomly placed on it

    1. Don’t be ridiculous. There’s a privilege matrix that determines a student’s grade on the first day of class.

      1. oh yes have to have that.

  10. As long as the teachers keep earning towards their pension, their job is done.

    1. Anti-racist educational initiatives always involve making things easier for administrators and teachers. Show that you have a certain arbitrary percentage of students from each disadvantaged group enrolled at each school, give them grades modeled to their place in the victim hierarchy, and boom, call it a day. I think one reason many schools haven’t opened is that they’re beginning to realize they don’t need actual attendance or instruction to complete their anti-racism objectives.

      1. Actually, placing education policy in the hands of government politicians in bureaucrats tends to make things more difficult for administrators and teachers, who spent decades learning and developing best practices and are suddenly asked to change all that the knew for the sake of an undefined, non-traditional objective.

        Turns out that government doesn’t know best how other people should do their own jobs. But I’m sure you already knew that.

        1. “who spent decades learning and developing best practices ”

          AhAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAH

          1. AAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH

            1. AHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAAHAHAAHAHHAAHHAAH

              1. HAHAHAHAHAHALOLAHAHAHAJAHAHAJAHAHAHHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHHAH

                1. YEARS!

                  DEVELOPING!

                  BEST!

                  PRACTICES!

                  AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHHA

                  1. AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAAHHAHAAHAHAHAHHAAH

  11. It’ll be great when the valedictorian can’t read.

    1. Probably the real point to all this.

    2. Everything written in books is racist, so learning to read means you’re pro-racism.

      Ipso facto it’s a good thing he can’t read.

    3. U R Mean

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  13. Here in Virginia, Fairfax County’s Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, generally rated as the top high school in the nation, is dropping its race-blind admissions test, and going to a lottery system, because not enough Black students are getting in.

    https://wtop.com/fairfax-county/2020/10/parents-alumni-protest-after-admissions-process-changed-at-va-high-school/

    1. Same thing with Lowell High in San Francisco – where the group that will lose out most is Chinese.

      1. I heard a dean from UC Berkeley on the radio years ago (probably back in the 70s when I commuted to the Bay Area) say that if the university’s admissions were based only on academic ability and grades, UCB would be overwhelmingly Asian women. So they couldn’t do that.

    2. I’m sure that not picking students based on ability to keep up with the material will be great for the mental health of the students who fall behind all of their peers, in a school where the nerds will rule because it’s a school that rewards intelligence and ability.

      No possible way this could backfire.

      1. It already happens in higher education. A kid who might be 75th percentile in Physics gets into MIT because of skin color. Everyone else is 99th percentile in Physics because it’s MIT, so the class gets taught at that level.

        That 75th percentile kid could’ve been an A student at pretty much any public university and received an education that would serve him well for the rest of his life. Instead he’ll flunk out of MIT, at least as long as MIT has actual standards and is willing to flunk people for not meeting them.

        1. at least as long as MIT has actual standards and is willing to flunk people for not meeting them.
          Eventually bachelor’s degrees will be dumbed down across all disciplines enough that master’s will be required for entry jobs.

          1. Working in IT, it’s amazing how this has already happened in a way.

            I put no stock in degrees at all, I care about experience. Some of the best people I’ve worked with had degrees in unrelated fields or no degree at all, and the amount of people with Bachelor’s in CS that are completely useless are too numerous to count.

            1. My company still hires juniors without degrees if they show aptitude. We also have plenty of non-CS majors working in IT. I had limited, self-taught programming experience when hired. But that was before the big growth in CS programs at universities that pump out whatever the current fad is.

          2. That has already happened. A Bachelor’s degree no longer has the prestige it used to carry. A Masters is the new Bachelor’s and a PH.D the new Masters. Associates degree may have the equivalency of a high school diploma, now. A HS diploma barely gets you out of retail or fast food these days, unless you start a business of your own.

    3. LOL! I went to TJHS for my senior year in 87-88. It has had the same problem since it’s founding.

    4. Or white people. That damn merit-based selection system advances white supremacy by favoring Asians over whites, blacks, and Hispanics.

      1. For the purposes of discussing white supremacy, asians are considered white, as are recent black immigrants from Africa and and the Caribbean, who perform very well academically. Systemic racism is weird like that.

      2. Try looking into how Blacks who are immigrants do in the USA.
        They do awesome and find none of the barriers that we are told hold back Black Americans back.
        Same is true of most foreign legal immigrants, so it cannot be structural racism unless it is a structural racism that benefits minorities.

    5. Until they find out not enough black students apply, either.

    6. How long until they rename Thomas Jefferson High School?

      1. Neighboring Falls Church is considering renaming Thomas Jefferson Elementary

  14. Crazy leftist educrats will improve your education by not measuring your learning!

    Crazy Trump makes Covid go away by advocating less testing for Covid!

    Mortality (death) rates are too high! This is discrimination and bias against the dead! We must STOP testing people (heart rates, breath rates) to see if they are dead, or not!

    Can I be awarded some sort of trophy for my brilliant new idea above?

    1. Regarding Covid tests, I just wish we were using tests without such a high false positive rate.

    2. “makes Covid go away by advocating less testing ”

      Testing cures Covid?

      Oh sorry I didn’t see it was you, the racist idiot.

      1. Testing kids in school cures ignorance?

        Where you went to stupid-school, they used this new logic? That’s where you learned this? If it’s not a cure, don’t get tested! ALL testing for cancer, for example, should be THROWN OUT!

    3. Can I be awarded some sort of trophy

      You have been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award for eating shit and hating blacks!

    4. He’s not advocating for less testing, he’s stating a fact. If you test less there will be less cases. Not less cases of Covid, less cases to count.
      The reverse is also true, which is not being acknowledged in the media. The testing has improved and more testing is done daily. The increase in testing yields more cases. Isn’t that revealing!

  15. Next up for the white and asian kids, Self-flagellation classes.

    1. California State University system will have mandatory classes on just that starting in three years. Take the class, convince the instructor that you are worthless – if white, or do not graduate. Do not make your real opinions if different from the instructor’s visible on social media until given a passing grade!

    2. Suffering is Noble – 101

      1. Ha. Good one

    3. Asian American and Cuban American kids, that is, white-adjacent racial minorities, are eligible for flagellation waivers, pending an ethnic background check.

  16. If you test a child on basic math and reading skills, and you’re “teaching to the test,” you’re teaching math and reading. And that’s the whole idea.
    – George W. Bush

    1. In NY in the 70’s we had the Regents’ exams. They tested for basic proficiency in the material. The final month of each year was basically spent running old tests, which were made widely available. If you could deal with any of the thousand or so questions that got cycled through each few years, you were proficient. Doesn’t matter what you call it, teaching to the test or learning, somehow you knew that F=ma, Columbus reached the new world in 1492, and etre is conjugated je suis, tu es, il est ….

  17. As long as kids are learning how to game a system they should end up just fine.

  18. >>The wealthiest (and usually whitest) students

    feed the monster.

  19. That kid’s smug look of white privilege is making me so ANGRY.

    1. Look at the (B)lack girl behind him. No smile. (w)hite kids should not be allowed to smile until every BIPOC is smiling.

    2. He’s got a really wide nose. Could be biracial, which means he’s privileged but stupid.

      1. If he’s biracial, then the reverse is more likely true: he’s an underprivileged genius, like your average DREAMer, as long as he doesn’t identify with his oppressive half.

  20. Imagine being a black kid in one of these schools who works hard and gets good grades. You show up on time every day, you do all of your work to a high standard, and yet come grading time the professor tells you that you just haven’t “mastered” the subject to the same degree as the white idiot next to you whose parents sit on the school board and donate thousands of dollars to the PTA.

    Just imagine.

    1. Unintended consequence, I’m sure.

  21. So the plan is not to increase the competency of students who may be falling behind, but to eliminate the usefulness of the grading system as an objective measurement of whether a student knows the material. Despite the fact that how well the student knows how to read, write and do mathematics is the only thing that is actually important in education. Oh, and it also gets rid of any ability to objectively measure whether teachers and the school system as a whole are good at their jobs.

    How convenient.

  22. In the 70s I recall hearing about an endemic problem of “passing through” in which kids, especially Black [though not exclusively] students, would be given a minimum passing grade from one year to the next and end up graduating functionally illiterate.

    So what do you know, old is new again. Because eliminating different outcomes with racial implications is worth everyone just being equally stupid.

    But they won’t be “equally” stupid; those students, black, Hispanic, or white [Asians conspicuous by their absence here?] who come to school from families that are functional and provide motivation to succeed will produce students who learn in spite of the schools misguided attempt at specious social engineering.

    And, given the outcomes of standardized tests, the gaps will remain; this will be yet more proof of how entrenched systemic racism is with even more ridiculous attempts to “confront practices like this that have gone on for years and years.”

  23. which sounds like a recipe for highly subjective grading

    If the premise is the system is biased against certain people, how does making it more subjective fix anything?

    1. Oh, but it’s going to be correctly subjective now, donchaknow?

    2. Objectivity is a white European value, you cultural imperialist.

  24. District officials evidently believe that the practice of grading students based on their average score is racist, and that an active effort to dismantle racism necessitates a learning environment free of the pressure to turn in assignments on time.

    Well, math is racist and adhering to a time based schedule is also a “white people thing” so, seems legit. /sarc

  25. an active effort to dismantle racism necessitates a learning environment free of the pressure to turn in assignments on time

    My younger self totally agreed with this, and practiced it often.

    1. Sounds like cultural appropriation to me. Shame on your racially insensitive, privileged younger self.

  26. Darn, I could have had perfect grades.

  27. Every teacher “teaches to a test” in that every teacher has goals they want their students to reach in order to pass their class. If every student is going to pass the class, why do we need teachers… ?

    1. That’s not what ‘teaching to the test’ means.

      It means focusing solely on learning the very limited question set of the test – often using underhanded methods to get the actual questions.

      1. That’s what it *might* mean.

        Or it could mean knowing in general terms what’s going to be tested for, and teaching that.

        1. Generally people don’t complain if that’s what it means. They get upset about a teaching bureaucracy that rewards teachers who teach students how to regurgitate the answer they’ve been spoonfed when that specific question comes up without understanding the process of it.

          They do not then learn how to assess the problem or question being posed, and figure out which answer is correct on their own.

          That’s what people mean when they say that “Teaching to the test” is bad. It also means that on tests the teachers can’t screen for their students in advance, those students are going to perform poorly because they don’t know how to deal with the unexpected. Which is why districts also want to de-emphasize standardized testing because they can’t manipulate the outputs as easily. This leads to massive cheating scandals where teachers in some school districts intentionally fix their students’ standardized tests after the fact.

      2. I am aware of what “teaching to the test” means. The goal of the “composition workshops” I taught at the University (generally known as “bonehead English), were to prepare students with the skills necessary to pass English 1A. The “test” I was teaching to was English 1A.

    2. They are the wardens.

  28. Are they going to stop docking your grade for attendance? I thought not.

    1. The school gets docked for attendance. The virtual class at the end of the last school year didn’t educate, but it did take attendance for school funding.

    2. Minority students still need to show up for class. Where else are they going to learn how oppressed they truly are?

  29. This is a great idea.
    As soon as employers realize the public schools are useless, the sooner they will start providing on-site schools for the employee’s children. Then the public school system goes away, and the property tax goes away, and freedom rings!

    True story; 1970.
    I was working on the first automated system to match job openings at the state employment office with applicants from the unemployment rolls. As we were entering all the paper job opening descriptions into the computer, the “old” description “HS”, meaning high school graduate was replaced with “RW” meaning the applicant could read and write. Even then a high school degree was not a valid indicator of learning basic life skills.
    Oh, by the way, when that got out to the press, it lead to a huge discussion of “social promotions”. (remember them? The’re back!)

    1. Then the public school system goes away, and the property tax goes away

      the property tax will never go away lol

    2. Accccccelerationism!

  30. Grades “shall not be influenced by behavior or factors that directly measure students’ knowledge and skills in the content area,” which sounds like a recipe for highly subjective gradingtotal bull shit.
    Also, your bill shall not be influenced by how much you buy, your clothing size shall not be influenced by any direct measure of your body parts, and the pronunciation of your name shall not be influenced by how it’s spelled.

    1. And your blockquote’s end shall not be determined by any tag.

    2. and the pronunciation of your name shall not be influenced by how it’s spelled

      I believe that’s already a thing, because requiring pronunciation to correspond with spelling is disrespectful to people whose names come from non-English languages (including languages invented by the parents who named the kid–or the kid himself, in cases of self-reinvention).

  31. minority students who are falling behind their classmates will be falling behind even if their teachers aren’t giving them Fs.

    Look at the bright side: This will prove once and for all that what’s taught in high school is useless crap, so people’s grades never had any real-world consequence anyway.

  32. Since they’re using ‘mastery’ as a lure or proxy for race, they’re mastery-baiting, right?

    The school district is using all these kids to help them mastery-bait.

  33. So what they are saying is that only white kids have the ability to turn their assignments in on time and get good grades, right?

    How is this not racist?

    1. No, no, Asian kids have assimilated racist white norms, so they get racist good grades, too.

      1. Indian kids too. And Africans. JFC. You’ve never seen a motivated student like a kid who actually grew up in Africa or higher pressure parents than African parents. Granted, you see more of them in college but those guys do not fuck around when it comes to education.

  34. So grades are to be determined by roll of the dice?

    Personally I agree grades shouldn’t be based on attendence or behavior …. But how can you ignore knowledge of the subject matter as a basis to determine a students mastery of the course?

  35. They certainly won’t be better prepared for college (where traditional grades are very much still a thing).

    Oh, you sweet, silly, naive little man! You really don’t know where this is headed, do you? Some day soon, when you’re opening yourself up to a discrimination lawsuit when you refuse to hire illiterate morons with Master’s degrees, you’ll look back at this day and laugh.

    1. They’ve already made a move to eliminate SAT scores as part of the admissions criteria. Whats’ next? Grades? After that it’s pretty much just diversity requirements I imagine.

  36. No worries, Jews, Asians and Whites will sue and win easily for counter-discrimination.

    1. They’ll win if they take it to the US Supreme Court, which is now majority white supremacist, including Thomas.

  37. I have a much better system to ensure grading isn’t racist:
    every assignment gets a random number assigned that is mapped to the student names after grading. all assignments are typed out so the teacher can’t recognize them by handwriting.

    And extend it to college admissions — no names or pictures, just applicant number. No address or school name, just random number.

    1. They tried that with blind auditioning for orchestra musicians. Now, they’re getting rid of blind auditions because too few POCs did well enough in blind auditions to get hired, in favor of direct racism (pressure to hire more POCs regardless of talent).

    2. See this would make sense if you weren’t doing results based analysis.

      In San Diego, anything that results in minorities (for these purposes Asians are not minorities) doing worse than white people means racism happened. If your system results in minorities doing worse than white people it’s a racist system and you’re a racist for suggesting it in the first place.

  38. My prediction is that White and Asian kids will continue to do well, and black and hispanic kids will take advantage of this to fall further behind, decreasing their chances for success in life.

    1. It depends. Maybe colleges and employers will see that they went to one of these schools and become suspicious of their actual abilities since grades alone won’t tell them anything.

  39. This made me think of the time Lindsay Bluth sent Maebe to that new age feel-goodery where they didn’t have letter grades, instead she received a grade of “alligator” in some subject.

    1. My dad taught at a college for a while where they did something like this. There were no grades, only pass/fail and the professors had to write “reviews” of their students.

      He didn’t think it was inherently bad, the right professor writing a thoughtful review can tell you a lot more than “B+” does, but the big problem was that students didn’t have a GPA to put on a resume when they graduated. None of their prospective employers wanted to read through 4 years of reviews by various professors, they wanted a 1 line “is this guy a dumbass or not?” entry to filter on.

      1. I’ve taught college classes before and sometimes they had 80+ students in them. There’s no way I could write an honest review of each student. I got to know a handful of them that would come to me for help, another handful who were aces and didn’t need my help, and a few who were stragglers that I would reach out to (who would usually end up failing anyway). The other 75-80% of them were just another test to grade on the stack.

  40. When you change your definition of ‘racist’ from ‘blocking equal opportunity’ to ‘lacking equal outcomes’ you get this type of stuff.

    1. When you fall asleep during the Long March on the Institutions, you get this type of stuff.

  41. Anti-racism IS racist. Full stop.

    1. Kendi makes a sad face.

      What a fraud that idiot is. It’s amazing. I used to see this obscure moron in the crazy racist Di Angelo realm. Now he’s infiltrated the school system.

      At this point, the public school system has to be gutted to revamp.

      In the meantime, for the love of God parents, GET YOUR KIDS OUT OF THERE. Don’t subject them to this madness.

    2. Nah, assuming that white tests, white culture, white success are the only correct forms of these things is what’s racist.

      I think we can legitimately disagree about how objective our measures of academic success are, but the fact is that the Charles Murrays of the world exist for one reason: to advocate against social welfare programs that would address race-based inequities. You want to deny that systemic racism is real, but that means you can’t explain race-based outcome differences in a way that’s not inherently racist (i.e., it’s genetic).

      Apart from being a catch-22, it also goes unexplained why people who are allegedly genetically less capable should be therefore subjected to pure Darwinianism. Do we throw the handicapped out on the streets as a society? Do you think we should?

      1. ‘Nah, assuming that white tests, white culture, white success are the only correct forms of these things is what’s racist.’
        Except it’s not racist, it is a basis for measurement that sets a bar in this country that other cultures flock to and the primary basis for success has to have some bar of comparison, otherwise how does a country define the form?

        ‘You want to deny that systemic racism is real, but that means you can’t explain race-based outcome differences in a way that’s not inherently racist (i.e., it’s genetic).’

        Okay, let’s take that and link it to your comment above. How, then, should we measure? What shall be the form?
        Should it be the black successful athlete or rapper? Lots of money, lots of trim, nice house, entourage. Hard to attain for all races, but there is some that get there and adopt the form. Limited and really defines along race and genetics. Now what about the black lawyer or engineer? Educated, family, doing well financially, owns, grows, expands. Maybe builds a small business and hires more like him/her. Is that not a legitimate form for a black man or is that too much whiteness.
        Let’s talk about the Jews. Focus on education, financial skills, family, and some hollywood stuff too.
        Indians, education, class, the educational fields that pay and provide a lifetime skill. Family.
        Asians, drive, education, setting a standard to be above the other races. Setting….a….standard for their families. Sound like the white thing. Maybe better.
        The ‘brown people’. Living in AZ I see a lot of the brown people. There are some looking for the benevolent holdout, but the majority are workers. They do a lot of the blue collar stuff that we used to be proud to do. They work hard, they save, they are very family oriented, they live multi-generational. Alot of them start small business and bring in more of their like and kind to work for them. They create opportunity within their community.
        It explains some inherent differences I have seen anecdotally. It may sound inherently racist to you. What it screams to me is there is more than enough opportunity in this country, but one has to aspire to it, not wait for someone to show them to it. If you wait at the bus stop for one kind of bus to pick you up you will miss the ride on all of the ones that stop before it.
        Communities are built from within, not from government edict.

        1. In order to not be racist, you have to accept that there is not plenty of opportunity for everyone. Luckily, once we get beyond tests and theories about parenthood and everything, we have a very simple way to measure outcomes: amount of dollars. If blacks are on average consistently poorer generation after generation, that’s the entire problem we’re talking about.

          Of course there is rightwing hysteria over every wacko progressive program at some school somewhere, but in general we should be for an empirical approach to fixing inequities that begin the day a black person is born. I could scarcely come up with a more elegant method than keeping education about the same and giving them more money.

          If members of communities of color want to be poorer than white people because it suits their lifestyle, there are many ways to make yourself poorer, so I think we can leave that to them.

          1. I think I understand what you are trying to say. This line stands out.
            ‘If blacks are on average consistently poorer generation after generation, that’s the entire problem we’re talking about.’
            So, how is that fixed? The right wing hysteria as you call it points to the fact that the generational poverty still exists in spite of the numerous programs designed to alleviate it. It is almost as if doing the same thing over and over get’s the same result. Why do you think that is?
            What if LeBron and 5 of his best BLM activist millionaire pals pooled their resources and formed an angel investor group and rolled into a dirt poor area and used their influence and resources to help people help themselves. What do you think the result would be?

          2. Do wealthy Blacks need to accept that poor Whites lack the same opportunities in order to be anti-racist?

  42. One of the few things GWB was right about was calling stuff like this the “soft bigotry of low expectations”

  43. Grades “shall not be influenced by behavior…”

    Psychos are now going to receive all A’s.

  44. So, rather than the American system of building up a history and evaluation over the course of a semester (or other period), apparently it’s going to fairer to move to the old European University model of no tests, quizes or mandatory attendance, but just your final defense with everything on the line in one orgy of ritual hazing. Yeah, that’s gonna be good!

  45. Jeeze, I sure don’t want to drive across a bridge designed by an engineer who was never graded. I guess that makes me a racist?

  46. This started in the late 70s/early 80s with the original “diversity” movement because of social outcomes the left didn’t like. They never really bought into a free society where govt doesn’t discriminate or pass laws forcing people to..they wanted to see a society that made them feel “good” not reality where people are not always equally represented in every occupation…what I always find so ironic is how the left has no problem with certain unequal outcomes as long at they are the beneficiaries…funny how they don’t care when say catholics or italians are underrepresented in Ivy League school or maybe the media….

  47. Jesus Christ just when you think public education can’t get any worse …there’s this.

  48. San Diego just went full retard.

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  52. Observations and questions:

    (1). “As evidence for the urgency of these changes, the district released data showing that minority students received more Ds and Fs than white students: Just 7 percent of whites received failing grades, as opposed to 23 percent of Native Americans, 23 percent of Hispanics, and 20 percent of black students.

    Did anyone actually look at the students’ work? Was failing to meet deadlines the only reason for D’s and F’s? When will students be expected to meet deadlines?

    (2) “Common grading practices such as averaging a student’s grade over time can disadvantage students who started the year behind grade level and can discredit the progress a student has made, experts have said,”

    Why were students “behind grade level” promoted? Will dropping deadlines allow them to ever catch up?

    (3) California eliminated its California High School Exit Examination in 2017. The result: Now community and junior colleges are stuck with teaching students high school math and writing skills: “Under a new state law enacted in 2018, community colleges can no longer require most students to take remedial classes; schools must instead offer college-level math and English course alternatives.”

  53. Asians are obviously white people in yellow face, because they do things like master a subject and turn in assignments in time.

    It’s laughable. The due dates are same for everyone. Do black kids turn them in late because of racism, or because they procrastinate or just don’t care to do quality work?

    The libs twist like a pretzel to not see that certain cultures are more groomed for success than others.

  54. How are A-F grades racist? You do the work, you get the grade. You don’t do the work, you don’t get the grade. Are they saying minorities for some reason aren’t as smart as white kids? That’s patently ridiculous, look for another answer.

  55. When are we going to apply diversity standards to pro sports?

    NBA, NFL, MLB?

    1. Major league sports are Black safe spaces, away from the cruel, unyielding oppression of privileged white America with its racist STEM initiatives.

  56. After the first complaints about the standard “mastery of the subject” occur, the Board will then realize that the only non-racist standard is “acquaintance with the subject”. Once the complaints about that standard get going the Board will conclude that “heard of the subject” is the only true measure of academic success.

    Ten years from now, will 80% of new high school grads be able to read this website?

    1. Does it matter? They need only identify the words “Democrat” and “Apply to All” on a ballot to achieve their dreams.

  57. Courses like Mathematics and Physics are, after all, when all is said and done, a white male construct created to make some women and minorities feel bad when they don’t do well at it.
    Therefore these courses must be dumbed down or purged in order not to make anyone feel bad or hurt their feelings.

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  59. here’s a truth bomb…. the colored kids are treated like they’re dumb because they ARE dumb. The only thing this will do is make the white kids as dumb as the dumb kids (that’s a paraphrase of a Joe Biden quote)

  60. I actually went to a highschool (a charter school) that used a system very similar to this. It’s a lot less confusing or bad than it sounds. The premise (at my school at least) was simple.
    Show you can do X, to Y standard. However long it took to get you to perform X, at Y standard. No time pressure. You can go as fast or as slow as you want. What does this mean in practice? If you’re lazy, you’ll fall behind. If you’re motivated, you can get ahead. If you’re smart and lazy, then your skill at gaming the rules will be a big factor. If you’re dumb but highly motivated, you can still get decent grades by putting in effort and actually learning something rather than being punished for taking longer to understand the concept.

    It sounds weird, but it actually works. I was a smart but lazy kid. I slacked off a lot. Didn’t get good grades. But the fact that I wasn’t punished for what I DIDN’T do, merely assessed for what I was actually capable of completing to the standard, probably saved me from flunking out. At the same time, the way the work was structured let me take my time on the projects I was actually interested in. Sure, I might’ve just put the minimum effort in on algebra, but I had the time and leeway to put together history presentations that blew people out of the water and got me high marks in something I actually gave a shit about.

    When executed correctly, this kind of grading system can actually be a lot better than the conventional “well, you didn’t fill any of the questions out, so we’ll just average this out like you got them all wrong.”

    In the real world, inaction isn’t great. A lot of times, it’s a bad move. Not turning your work in to your boss is bad. Turning your work in late is bad. But you know what just might be worse? Taking that spread sheet your supposed to fill out and slapping a zero in every single field. Those aren’t the same thing, and it’s not a bad thing that a grading system reflect that.

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