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Is Student Grading The Right Choice?

Kris Desmond

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It doesn’t matter if you’re a first grader or a senior in college, everybody should be able to grade their teacher.  All teachers have their ups and downs, but a student grading policy might help to fix that.  In this article we will be discussing many pros and cons for student grading.

According to Debate.org, when students grade teachers, it gives the teachers a chance to reflect on their teaching skills.  Since the teacher is with the kids for a whole quarter, semester, or year, sometimes the students know the best way for the teacher to improve on his/her skills. For example, when the teacher doesn’t explain to the kids well enough, the students can reflect and let the teacher know he/she needs to explain more. However,  there is always a bad side to a good side.

 A good point was made on debate.org, “Teachers went to college to teach and grade children. Considering the importance of knowing if they are doing their job properly, SUPERVISORS went to college to train and grade teachers. CHILDREN should not be given this responsibility AND power over their teachers. It seems unethical. Only school personnel would understand this concept.”  It goes on to say that students won’t grade teachers on their performance; they will grade teachers on whether or not they like them.

I asked Patrick Panniello and Mr. Gallant how to keep the grading unbiased.  Mr. Gallant responded with, “Rule out the best scores and the worse scores; keep the median scores and improve based on the median scores.” Patrick’s response was along the same lines.  The reason why we get rid of the top and bottom scores is, because if one student likes the teacher he/she will rate the teacher with a higher score and vice versa.

David Pawlowski, Principal of Alexander Middle School, once said, “I’m not sure that children have enough knowledge about pedagogy to evaluate teachers; that gets into a tricky area.”  My point of view follows this quote; teachers go to college to learn how to teach, doctors go to college to become a doctor, why should students be able to grade their teachers.  Students do not have the knowledge to successfully grade a teacher.

In the end, I think student grading is a bad idea.  There is no real right or wrong answer to this question; it is all based on the school’s opinion.  If a teacher is good, then the administrator should realize that; the same goes for if the teacher is a bad teacher too.   

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3 Comments

3 Responses to “Is Student Grading The Right Choice?”

  1. Alex Mootafian on April 11th, 2016 2:14 pm

    Great article, Kris!

    [Reply]

  2. Patrick Mattin on April 11th, 2016 2:18 pm

    Nice article, Kris!

    [Reply]

  3. Kristoff Robson on April 14th, 2016 11:46 am

    Wowee! This is a very well-written article that raises many good points. I appreciate the fresh take on the subject that you bring to the table, Kristopher. I look forward to reading many more well-written articles like this from you in the future.

    [Reply]

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Is Student Grading The Right Choice?