Letter: Student grades, stress may be related

To the Editors:

In the March 8 issue of The Bulletin, there was an article about the high school boosting grades for the students in precalculus. Concerns about the students’ performance are being taken very seriously. About 30% of the grades. Students have not prepared appropriately for the precalculus class. Wilton High School provided the opportunity for students to master the skills and understanding necessary for the course. For some reason, not enough students registered for the class so it was dropped. I have tremendous respect for our educators. Their recommendations for a math modeling class were not followed. Now the class is being held after school.

Another remedy has been to “boost” grades by introducing a curve described by Mr. O’Donnell as the “renorming” to be fair to the students and their families in terms of reflecting actual performance.

“Because the grades received by some of this year’s precalculus students were not what we normally have, they were adjusted to match what we historically had.”

If kids are getting Ds, or failing, it’s a great deal to have them changed. When I was in school I had to earn my grades. That grade reflected my mastery of the subject matter. Adding to the problem are the parents who question the teachers’ methods of instruction.

Next to this article, there was one about stress levels. Perhaps we all need to look inward, not question the professionals or ignore their suggestions about math modeling classes. If this recommendation was followed, perhaps stress levels would be lower.

If we keep telling our children that they are better than a “B” grade we are fueling the stress levels.
Rebecka Tucker
Wilton, March 12