If a North Carolina high school student scores a 92, it's a high B. In some other states it would be a low A.
Leaders of some of the state's largest districts, including Charlotte-Mecklenburg and Wake, are urging the state to allow districts to adopt a 10-point scale that they say would help N.C. students compete for spots in good colleges.
"We met with the state superintendent in January and have continued to advocate for this change," CMS Superintendent Heath Morrison says. "It is consistent with most school districts and states across the nation. The current grade scale puts our NC students at a competitive disadvantage with their peers in other states."
The Wake school board's policy committee recently discussed the 10-point scale, Keung Hui of the News & Observer reports. The current seven-point scale, in which 93 to 100 is an A, 85 to 92 is a B and so on, was locked in to get transcript consistency across the state, he reports.
Under a 10-point scale, 90 to 100 would be an A, 80 to 89 a B, etc. (I'm not sure if the failing point is universal, but under this scale recently approved by Henrico County (Va.) schools, a D is 65 to 69 and anything below 65 is failing.)
"Supporters give reasons such as how a 10-point scale might cause more students to get As and Bs and could result in an increase in student self-esteem and confidence," Hui writes. "Critics say a 10-point scale might diminish student motivation to achieve higher standards."