The Student Prints

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The Student Prints

The Student Prints

Canceling Semester Exams


High school students are known to stress over exams before being able to enjoy their Winter Break. But what if all of that time spent studying and stressing out just… disappeared?

In previous years, students who did not take their exams or failed to even try to complete them received a “Did Not Attempt”. This grade goes into PowerSchool as a zero. 

To help the majority of distant learners, Sylvania Schools decided to not hold exams for first semester. Because of the short amount of in-person learning time between teachers and students, this adjustment will be beneficial to those that are struggling.

“I think the special circumstances of this semester have caused enough stress and anxiety, so not taking exams this semester can alleviate some of that,” English teacher Jilian Stefango said. 

In the original policy, there has been one grading scale that allowed for a 50% to be a student’s lowest grade. This means that if a student were to earn a 30% in a class during one quarter, their grade would be rounded up to a 50%. A policy like this is to help students pass the semester, even if they had difficulty.  

But this can easily be taken advantage of by students who are nearly failing their quarterly classes. To calculate the semester grade, the percentages from quarter one and quarter two are added together and multiplied by two. A passing grade consists of 298 points, meaning that as long as a student makes up for their missing points with their exam grade, they are able to pass the semester. 

This means that if a student were to earn 200 points by receiving a rounded 50% each semester, all they had to do was ace their exam in order to bring their total points up to 298. Essentially, anyone could put zero effort into their classes and still make up for their missing points by putting in the work to score well on their exam. 

However, this semester, the grade can only be rounded up to a 50% if the student obtains a grade of 35% or higher. A grade below 35% would be rounded to that 35%. This allows for a more accurate representation of a student’s performance in place of the exams.

“Flexibility in hybrid and remote learning is essential,” Mrs. Stefango said, “so it’s a nice opportunity to students to show what they’ve learned in a different way other than exams.”

“I’m happy we’re not taking exams this semester because studying for them is super stressful,” junior Alexis Kieffer said. Kieffer, like many other students, spends a large amount of time studying right before Winter Break.

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