“The minister of education says she is preparing a province wide grading policy that will require teachers to deduct marks if students don't do their work.”
I truly hope all educators are as disgusted as I am.
Their minister of education, Donna Harpauer, exclaimed,
“at least five or six school divisions don't deduct marks for bad behavior”.
I was wondering, why don’t ALL the divisions not deduct marks for bad behavior?
Her solution is a provincial wide policy that will require teachers to deduct marks if students don’t complete their work on time. I agree that schools should be a place where responsibility is addressed, but where in the mandated outcomes, does it express that schools should be grading such responsibility? In fact, when you start grading on ideas outside of the mandated outcomes, is that not malpractice?
When we start putting grades on tasks it actually decreases the potential learning that is possible. The most insightful piece of research in the field of motivational psychology is that the more people are rewarded for doing something, they more they tend to lose interest in the actual task. Also, by deducting marks for last assignments, the grade is distorting what it actually should represent; what outcomes have the students learned.
As teachers, we need to be trusted that we will assess properly and appropriately. I believe that these “blanket mandates” actually destroy the trusts this trust. In my school, I truly do feel my opinion is valued and true innovation is approved and endorsed. Once a teacher truly feels trusted that he/she is allowed to endeavor on new educational roads, without criticism and reproach, we will start to see assessment practices that are actually validated