Allow WCPSS students to choose to use Q3 grades as final grades OR to use pass/fail.

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    This letter is a petition to grant Wake County students the option to record their current Quarter 3 grades as their final grade for the Spring 2020 semester.  Students should be able to choose whether they want to record their current grades on their transcript, OR change them to pass/fail. During this difficult time, everyone is making much needed sacrifices.  Therefore, we should not have to make the additional and unnecessary sacrifice of not being able to earn our best possible GPA. Indeed, the grade would not fully reflect the entire semester’s course-work, but it is the best possible measurable reflection available.  The recent decision on April 3, 2020 to declare all Q3 grades pass/fail has presented a number of challenges to those students who are performing well. For example: 

  • Colleges will be unable to see how students performed during the Spring 2020 semester, especially for difficult Honors and AP courses. (Note, in-state universities, like UNC-Chapel Hill, are giving students the option to record their current grades on their college transcript OR choose to have pass/fail grades.)
  • Public schools in other counties and states, as well as private schools, have made the decision to record grades.  Therefore, giving them a distinct advantage over WCPSS students when applying to colleges.  
  • Even though 78% of the quarter was complete, 100% of hard-earned grades would be erased.
  • As a result of this decision, some students may potentially lose scholarship money and/or qualification due to a missed opportunity to raise their GPA. This outcome is especially unfair since WCPSS students would be compared to students from other districts who are able to accurately show their GPA from the Spring 2020 semester.

  This pass/fail decision may seem wise at this time, but it could end up being costly for students applying to colleges in the future.  I believe I speak on behalf of a large number of fellow students who have worked extremely hard to achieve the grades they have earned. Giving them the option to record these grades would validate their hard work and increase their likelihood of being accepted into colleges. WCPSS says in their vision statement, “All WCPSS students will be prepared to reach their full potential and lead productive lives in a complex and changing world.” This forced pass/fail policy does not allow students to reach their full potential during this unprecedented complex and changing time. Please, Wake County, do not allow this crisis to affect our future hopes and dreams as students.