This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.
Samuel Reed’s post about passing failing students has sparked quite a conversation.
Poster Philly HS teacher has a detailed comment about his/her experience with students who "must pass."
"Unlike what Sam is advocating – students, parents and teacher each meeting half way – the CSAP process puts 95%+ on the teacher.
I can make phone calls, meet with the student, provide "incentives" other than the dreaded "packet," etc. but the students know the game. They know they can’t get below a 60% the first marking period and 50% the 2nd – 4th, and they know the teacher has to justify the failure. This year I printed and handed out grade summaries to my students every 2 – 3 weeks. I had them circle/underline what was missing. I followed up on what they needed to do. The last week before grade were turned in I had a "marathon" with some students. I refused to do "the packet" and had them complete what we did in class and/or was assigned. Most did it but I was exhausted and my children (the ones I live with) asked me what was wrong."
Philly HS teacher also referenced Ron Whitehorne’s comment giving a little context to the passing issue, over on the Arlene Ackerman report card post.
Between these two posts we’ve received dozens of comments about this issue.
Tell us more. Teachers, does your experience mirror Philly HS teacher’s? We’ve heard from Samuel Reed’s son, but what about other students–are students focused on the bare minimum to pass?
Thanks for participating in this conversation and sharing your experiences. We look forward to reading more comments.