Students Adjust to New Grade System

    Fenwick used to rely on quarter grades, but just this last year mid-semester grades were introduced. Teachers wrote quarter grades off as irrelevant this year, but students felt a growing pressure and for many it opened their eyes. How does this seemingly small change affect students and faculty? 

     Why did Fenwick choose to switch from quarter to semester grades? Mr. Collins, the Director of Scheduling/Student Data provided some important insight into the decision. Mr. Collins explains, “We changed to Blackbaud this year too, and it’s a way to move the school to be more college prep.” 

     He then moved on to describe the impact on faculty stating, “It’s an adjustment because they’re accustomed to the quarter system, but for many teachers it’s easier because they can go back to a point system and not weighted.” 

     He hopes that the change will benefit students, and he understands that there’s two perspectives among the students: one being that it’s a clean slate and important reminder, and one being that quarter grades are not needed. 

       Some students feel that seeing the grades front and center reminded students to get on top of their work before the looming mid-semester grades. 

     Arissa Reyna from the class of 2023 felt as if the quarter grades were just as important as semester grades. She said, “They weren’t as good as I would hope they would be but I am hoping to get them up by the end of the semester. It was a little scary knowing my parents and teachers and basically everyone could see them, so I’ll have to try harder.” 

        Angelina Larrea, also from the class of 2023, said that, “I was surprised to see a report card, and everybody I know was surprised,” She goes on further to describe the impact on the faculty saying, “I remember a couple of my teachers complaining about how the change wasn’t really needed.”  

     Jamon Graham ‘23, recognizes the positive aspects of the change. He adds,“I have way more time to get my grades up and we learn more with semester grades. Really, quarter grades are scary and come really fast, especially for freshmen who are just starting high school.”