Hundreds attend Lexington One meeting to discuss new learning po - - Columbia, South Carolina

Hundreds attend Lexington One meeting to discuss new learning policy


Hundreds of parents showed up Tuesday night for Lexington One's school board meeting to discuss the district's new "Grading for Learning" policy.

That policy has many parents, teachers, and students outraged.

The parents say they're outraged and stressed and so are their students.

Parents and students spoke for several hours. While we were there, dozens of parents told board members the policy just is not working. They say students grades are suffering because the only thing that matters are test grades and not all the work in between.

Under the policy, students are allowed to re-take tests. Some say that promotes mastery of the material while others say it causes undue stress and puts students with different learning abilities at a disadvantage.

"I have watched them who are honor roll, AP students go to making C's and D's," said Kimberly Stammire-Cockrell. "These children do not make these grades. They've never made these grades. They strive for excellence in athletics and in school and all this policy is doing is completely tearing them apart."

"I see it in our students, my classmates as well as myself when I wake up every morning," said student Erika Arndt. "I'm not motivated to go to school. I don't want to be there. I don't have anything to do there anymore. We take tests like, once a week, after my tests I can go home. I don't have any reason to be there because we don't learn anything else."

"I have never seen anywhere in the business world, anywhere in my personal world, or even anywhere in my spiritual life or church world where lowering the standard to include more people has raised the output of production," said one parent.

We found only one parent tonight who says the policy is not failing students. Michelle Lester says if the policy is implemented properly, she can see the benefits, particularly preparing students for college.

"What's happening right now, I've heard a lot in the room tonight about homework doesn't count. Well, so what? You should still do it because you need to learn. What I believe they're teaching my child is if you don't do the work, you're not going to get the grade. My kid didn't do her homework, she didn't know enough to pass the test. When they get to college, where I'm paying for it, they're going to know, I have to do my homework, I can't go to that party, I need to make a good decision, I need to learn the material so I can be successful, that's what I want from my child," said Lester.

One of the parents at the meeting read a letter by state Sen. Katrina Shealy, who believes the policy is in effective. She says, "This grading system needs a second look. Let's take time, back up, and re-group."

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