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When your kid makes the honor roll, it's usually cause for some celebration. The family goes out to dinner, the allowance might go up ... hey, maybe you even slap one of those embarrassing bumper stickers on the back of your car. But when Beth Tillack of Dade County, Fla., discovered her 7th grade son had made the honor roll this quarter, she wasn't exactly jumping for joy. Actually, she was downright pissed about it.
Sounds pretty crazy, right? But Tillack's annoyance is really aimed at the school district, which seems to be putting just about everyone on the honor roll these days, despite some lackluster grades. Apparently, 45 to 50 percent of students at Pasco Middle School make the honor roll, as long as their GPA is above a certain letter grade. Tillack's own son had earned both a C and a D on his recent report card; but it all balanced out since he otherwise had straight A's.
But that's precisely the part about the whole policy that Tillack is clearly not cool with. Speaking with ABC affiliate WFTS, Tillack said, "It doesn't make any sense. The bottom line is there is nothing honorable about making a D. ... I was not happy, because how can get my child to study for a test when he thinks he's done enough?"
If all this seems a bit over the top, it's important to note that the school principal actually agrees with her.
"I do agree with her," Principal Kim Anderson told ABC. "I feel it's important for students to progress by meeting standards. We measure them by standards, they know if they've met them or not. Sometimes grades don't always indicate that."
So what's being done in the meantime? No word yet on whether Pasco Middle School really is yanking Tillack's son from the honor roll per her wishes, but the school administration is considering a policy change. The county's superintendent of schools, along with other administrators, are currently mulling over whether it'd be best to switch from the GPA-based system to one that would only grant kids with all A's and B's the award.
One thing's for sure: If the grade policy does change, it would impact some 35,000 students in the district. (Man, can you imagine being the kid whose mom got everyone kicked off the honor roll?)
What do you think? Is this mom right to speak out, or making a big fuss over nothing?