Con: Access to grades is more dangerous than it may seem

Rowan McWhinnie, Features Editor

Seeing grades 24/7 may sound like a blessing; freedom from the constant worries which come when not knowing where one stands. But in reality, this could create more grade and stress related problems than it solves. 

In recent months, students at Masters have brought up the idea of being able to see grades at any time, by logging onto a website. Though this may be easier and much faster than waiting for your grades at the end of each quarter, it can become a burden for both students and teachers. Continual access to grades shifts the emphasis from understanding a subject, to the amount of points you got and the final percentages. It creates an environment where students put the numerical value of their work before its true educational value and the meaning behind what they are being taught. 

Teachers, already having multiple classes and dozens of students’ work to grade, would now be under the added pressure of logging their students’ grades daily on the website. Because of the 24-hour access to the website, students would be continually checking up on their grades and making sure that all their assignments have been submitted and were graded to their liking. However, should a student see that an assignment was still at zero percent, they would likely begin to stress, thinking that the teacher did not like their work and gave them a bad grade. They might question if they even submitted it, and likely, would email the teacher. Soon after, teacher’s inboxes would be flooded with emails regarding uploading their students’ grades to the website, when they might have just been slightly behind on work.

Finding out grades at the end of each semester is typically a time of high stress and angst for most students, and with over 20% of teens undiagnosed with mental illness’: anxiety, depression It can be an even more difficult time for specific students. Students having the option to constantly see whether they are doing poorly or not in a class and have that reminder that they are not succeeding can have a major negative effect on someone’s mental health. Not only is it just the student who is able to see their grades but their parents as well. Many teens are put under a ton of pressure from their parents to get the perfect grades and go to the “perfect” college. Having them able to see how their child is doing at any moment can heighten tension within a family.   

Furthermore, constant access encourages students to seek constant validation through grades, which is unhealthy. A high school student’s life should never completely revolve around school and the grades they are receiving. Their teenage years should consist of being with their friends, exploring new places and learning new things and remembering to enjoy their highschool years.