Grades are Garbage

By Karthikeya K., 4th Grade

December 2015

Imagine a classroom with students all getting A’s, but they forget everything they learned the moment they hand in their test. Is this the way school is supposed to look like? Wouldn’t be better if students wanted to learn for the sake of learning? This world would happen if we abolished grades forever! After looking at both sides of whether or not grades should be used, I believe that there should be no grades in schools. Instead of grades, there should be more written feedback, for comments are more meaningful than numbers, and they motivate students to learn for the sake of learning.

To start with, comments have meaning while numbers do not. Grades don’t explain anything. For example, one day when my teacher gave us our grammar tests back, I made a mistake, but she didn’t mark what I did wrong. I had go up to her the next day and ask her what I did wrong. On the other hand, my math test, which was graded by a different teacher, contained a lot of comments even though I scored a 100%. Reading the comments gave me the opportunity to solve problems faster than before.To sum up, comments help students learn while grades don’t give any feedback.  

Another reason why grades should be banned is so that the student learns for the sake of learning. Grades should be abolished because they make kids concentrate on getting an A more than learning. A lot of kids in my class care about their grades more than learning. After they get an A, they will forget about what they learned the moment they hand in their papers. My dad said, “Proper comments helped me learn.”

However, some parents and teachers think that grades give an accurate score.  Parents don’t want to read all the comments and try to figure out how much their student scored. Instead, they want a straight out number that will be easier for them to understand. For example, a parent would take a really long time trying to figure out how much their student scored from a bunch of comments. Even though reading comments is time consuming, it’s worth it. Comments tell what the student is doing wrong, and the same time they tell what the student is doing right.  Consequently, the parent will know what his child needs to work on instead of focusing on everything.

Those are all my reasons why there should be no grades. Grades have no meaning because they are just  numbers, and you don’t understand anything if teachers give you a number. Students learn for the sake of learning if teachers give them comments because they don’t just care about getting a good grade. So now what? Go tell your teachers and administrators to ban grades and use comments instead.            

2 thoughts on “Grades are Garbage

  1. Sravyasri Gana Lankipalle

    Dear Karthik,

    I really like how you kept your ideas organized. Also I liked how you made your ideas reasonable. However I found five holes in your argument. One of my holes that I poked into your argument was actually we go over the answers after each quiz. Next, when we want to get an A we put lots of effort into our learning. Number three is the most important because no one forgets a method or concept though they may feel like they did. They use the method when they have to use it. Fourth reason is why should we give up grades when comments are use less. Finally my last reason is just because the number doesn’t show what he or she did wrong doesn’t mean we can’t scan the work of the student to see the error.


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