Stanford, bring back the COVID Grading Policy!!

Stanford, bring back the COVID Grading Policy!!

217 have signed. Let’s get to 500!

Why this petition matters

Started by Stanford Student

Following a recent announcement from University Provost Persis Drell, it is evident that Stanford needs to bring back the COVID grading policy of Academic Years 2019-2020 and 2020-2021, which gave all students access to a credit/no credit grading basis with no effect on course eligibility for major requirements.

The announcement has not only mentioned that in-person classes have been delayed to beginning Monday, Jan. 24 at the beginning of week 4, as opposed to beginning week 3, but it has also mentioned changing protocols for students who are exposed to COVID, some of which involve living in an empty room or common space that has been repurposed as temporary sleeping space or a friend’s room.

Nearly 400 students and 300 faculty, staff, and postdocs have tested positive since the beginning of the winter quarter. Seeing how rapidly COVID protocols are changing and how uncertain of a time it is for students, combined with the fact that almost a third of the quarter is guaranteed to be online, and new announcements may prolong the period of virtual learning, it is crucial for Stanford to bring back its original COVID grading policy for this academic year.

Students need to be able to focus on recovery and mental health while learning in an online format. The pandemic has not stopped affecting us, and the policies in place during it must be reinstated while cases rise. Additionally, these policies aim to work towards racial and economic equity, since COVID has hugely disparate impacts on different communities.  

The COVID-19 grading policy includes the following provisions (sourced from the Registrar's Office)

  • All University courses offered for a letter grade must also offer students the option of taking the course for a “credit” or “no credit” grade, with the exception of courses offered by the Graduate School of Business, the School of Law, and the School of Medicine M.D. Program, unless opted in by those schools.
  • Units of credit taken for a “credit” or “satisfactory” grade will not count against the 36-unit maximum of credits (27 credits for transfer students) not taken for a letter grade that may be applied toward the 180 units required for the bachelor’s degree.
  • The senate urges deans, departments, and programs to consider adopting local policies to count courses taken for a “credit” or “satisfactory” grade toward the fulfillment of degree program requirements and/or alter program requirements as appropriate.
  • Courses taken as “credit” or “no credit” may be eligible to fulfill general education requirements pending review by the Breadth Governance Board (for Ways of Thinking/Ways of Doing); the Thinking Matters Governance Board (for Thinking Matters); the Program in Writing and Rhetoric (for PRW1 and PRW2 classes); and the Writing and Rhetoric Review Board for Writing in the Major.

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217 have signed. Let’s get to 500!