Let’s Rank It

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Highs schools all over the country have different methods to classify one student’s success, but the most popular method of all is class ranking.

Class Ranking is the process of taking student’s averages and ordering these averages from highest to lowest. The student with the highest average is ranked number of their class, the valedictorian, and from there it goes 2, 3, 4… etc.

The class ranking system is also implemented into the Liverpool Central school district, but for how much longer?

Fayetteville-Manlius and Jamesville-Dewitt central school districts have both gone away with the class ranking system and have implemented alternative ways to classify students. With this knowledge, Liverpool has now decided to start looking into forgoing the class ranking system.

The schools that are going away with class rank argue that the competition to have the highest rank replaces learning to memorizing. The main goal of schooling is to have a student gain knowledge to aid in one’s success for their future.

Even with this goal to have students consume as much knowledge as possible, it appears that students often forgo truly absorbing the information in order to memorize information to not just pass, but to excel.

With the pressure to not only have good grades for college, but also have a high class rank to impress colleges a multitude of students may resort to simply memorizing information. School districts have looked into this issue or to even decide if that is an actual issue in their specific school districts.

Numerous other schools argue on the opposite end argue the exact opposite. Schools believe that class rank is a good way to measure student’s excellence and instills healthy competition between students do do better and to achieve more.

Between both sides, it is agreed that there needs to be some sort of measure to classify students.

A lot of schools chose an alternative method of percentages. The students with the highest grade point averages would be in the top 10% and the percentages would increase from there. This allows for students to have no competition, but also to convey to colleges about where students fall. In this method often times there are no valedictorians.

Even with the various alternatives, some believe that competition is inevitable in an environment where success is praised and encouraged. With that many wonder if class rank is even the issue at all for the negative competition in high school.

Whatever one’s stance is, it is up to the board members to decide what is best fitting for Liverpool high school.

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