by Bobert Woodward, investigative reporter | April 1, 2022
At Saint Francis, grade curving is always welcomed — but not anymore. Beginning in the 2022-23 school year, three new policies will be implemented regarding summative grades, according to a leaked half-page memo from the Office of Student Stress titled “The New Curve.”
The first policy is a strict prohibition on any form of grade curving that improves a student’s grade, which “includes but is not limited to adding points to those a student earned, subtracting from the total points available on a summative assessment, or recalculating grades based on percentile in the class,” according to the memo.
The second is a mandatory grade readjustment if either the median or mean class grade on a summative assessment is above ninety percent. If so, all students’ grades must be lowered by ten percentage points.
The reason for the changes? “A re-evaluation of academic standards during the pandemic,” according to the memo. No other information has been specified; the bulk of its text consists of examples of soon-to-be-prohibited curving practices and a large red “CLASSIFIED” header.
The header was anything but a deterrent for preventing the document’s circulation, as students chatted about the policies to teachers’ chagrin throughout the day.
The changes immediately sparked vehement backlash. “You have to be out of your mind to come up with changes like this,” complained a senior. “I might as well transfer to Bellarmine next year.”
Soma Tif (’25) similarly deplored the changes: “I love curves on grades — like when my last test grade went from sixty to seventy-eight because the class performance was mid [sic]. So to me, this news is devastating. I have classes where the whole grade is based on one summative. If everyone does well, then everyone gets punished.” He continued berating the policies in colorful language that The Lancer unfortunately cannot publish.
Teachers also noted new possibilities for gaming the system, from giving absurdly high grades on formative assignments (e.g. two thousand percent) to manually rounding final grades up to the nearest integer. “Honestly, I don’t understand this mean, median stuff. But for the record, there’s nothing that forbids making formatives worth ninety-two percent, summatives worth eight. ‘The New Curve’ doesn’t apply to formatives,” explained a math teacher.
“Heck, if a kid rightfully earned an A and the blasted system forces it to a ninety, I’ll do some dabbling, add a few points here and there, absolutely no corruption whatsoever. There’s no Constitution or anything to prohibit this,” added a history teacher.
However, some teachers and students laud the changes. “We got rid of standards last year, so I’m glad to see some attempt to return to normalcy,” said a science teacher. “Back when I was studying French at USC, things were actually challenging. It was some pretty craaazy stuff.”
A sophomore agreed, commenting on the trends in grades she had seen over the past two years: “During quarantine, it was like everyone kept getting A after A after A. If I read transcripts out loud, I’d sound like a SoundCloud rapper ad-libbing in a song. A’s used to be much harder to earn, but it’s fair to say they’re now the most common grade.”
She continued, “If your grades go down from the new policy, then that’s tough. But I’ll be fine. I’m built different [sic].”
Nevertheless, the general sentiment on campus is one of outrage. “This is like a reverse curve,” grumbled a junior. “‘The New Curve’? More like the new curse.”
This is the April Fool’s edition of the paper. We regret to inform you that all the content contained therein is fictional.
Categories: The Laughter Online