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The student news site of Liberty High School in Frisco, Texas


The student news site of Liberty High School in Frisco, Texas


The student news site of Liberty High School in Frisco, Texas


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Would a pass-fail system benefit students 

Rin Ryu
Under the current grading system, students face stress, which is why schools should consider implementing a pass-fail grading system. This grading system will give students a passing or failing grade instead of a letter grade. This system puts less stress on students and allows for more free time to work on extracurricular activities.

For many high school students, it is crucial to get into their dream college. To do this, students focus on receiving the best possible grades and maintaining a good GPA. This mentality stems from the current letter grading system. What could it mean for students if the pass-fail system is implemented? 

The pass-fail grading system means that students receive a passing or failing grade instead of the standard letter grade. Instructors determine if their students have passed the class based on if that student has reached a proficiency level in the course material. The pass-fail system encourages students to focus on their learning and the development of essential skills rather than comparing their performance with other students through class ranks. 

This system puts less stress on students and allows for more time to work on extracurricular activities. With the current letter grade system, high schoolers are doing an average of 2.7 hours of homework per weeknight. According to the National PTA and the National Education Association, students should follow the 10 minutes by grade level rule. This means that freshmen should be doing 90 minutes (1.5 hours) of homework per night, 100 minutes (1.67 hours) for sophomores, 110 minutes (1.83 hours) for juniors, and 120 minutes (2 hours) for seniors. 

The amount of homework that high school students (of all grade levels) complete each night is 42 minutes longer than is suggested for seniors. This much time spent on schoolwork may increase students’ stress and anxiety levels.

According to a Mayo Clinic research, medical students who were graded using the pass-fail system felt less stress than those who were graded using the old system. Although the study’s focus is on medical students, high school students who experience comparable amounts of stress can also benefit from its findings.

The majority of research studies on the pass-fail system focus on the behavior of medical students. This is due to the fact that several medical schools are known to adopt the non-traditional system in an effort to lower anxiety levels, promote a less competitive environment, and generally improve students’ well-being.

According to research conducted on the positive effects extracurricular activities have on students, it was determined that participating in these activities has a huge impact on teenagers’ development. Teenagers learn how to communicate with peers, how to behave appropriately, and build a foundation on what it takes to succeed in school. 

With the standard letter grading system, students are more cautious when choosing extracurricular activities or electives since they might “distract” them from their core subjects. This distraction could cause students to receive a lower grade so they only take easier subjects. 

Since GPA plays less of a factor in the pass-fail system, students can focus on different subjects that are harder or require more time. When describing classes, students often say it is an “easy A” or describe how they failed the class. They never focus on the quality of their learning. Students focus so much on the possibility of failure that they don’t try new things if there is a chance it could ruin their GPA. 

The implementation of the pass-fail system could benefit students greatly. Students will experience less stress, face a less competitive environment, have the ability to focus more of their time on extracurricular activities, pursue more difficult subjects, and overall, improve their well-being. 

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About the Contributors
Lea Garcia-Salazar
Lea Garcia-Salazar, Staff Reporter
Lea Garcia-Salazar is a Sophomore in her first year with Wingspan. She is a member of DECA and Aid4Need. In her free time, she can be found spending time with her family and friends, reading, writing, and volunteering. Lea is excited to be a part of such a fantastic group! Contact Lea:
Rin Ryu
Rin Ryu, Editor-in-Chief
Rin Ryu is a senior entering her third year of Wingspan. Her favorite things include journaling, listening to music, and tigers. In the future, she hopes to pursue a career path in political science. Rin is excited to be one of the Editor-in-Chiefs and looks forward to what is to come this year! Contact Rin:

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