Thou Shalt Not Reward Straight A’s

Public educators can’t do anything right, even when they try.

Last week school officials at Eastern Middle School decided to reward straight-A students by throwing an exclusive party for them. Because the explicit purpose of the party was to recognize and reward straight-A students, students who didn’t get straight A’s were not invited.

What flabbergasted me was that this happened in ultra-lib Montgomery County, Maryland.

Well, the nooze media weren’t going to take that lying down. “Reporters” descended on the school to denounce the unfairness of it all. Oh, they asked sharp questions! Make those sixth-graders squirm! “Don’t you think this was unfair to the kids who weren’t invited to the party? Don’t you think it made them feel left out? Don’t you think it hurt them terribly?” There’s a Fox News clip floating around the Internet in which a “reporter” sticks her mike in the little kid’s face and asks, “Does this make you think you’re smart?”

So… if the “educators” reward kids for high achievement, they’re “promoting elitism”… and if they don’t, then they’re encouraging mediocrity. They can’t win.

But the answer to this problem is simple and obvious.

Just throw more parties.

One for kids with a B average, one for kids with a C average, another for Ds, and finally, a special party for kids who get straight F’s–parties for everyone. You’d think a party for the F Troop would be a natural for Montgomery County.

What lesson do you suppose this incident has taught the children at Eastern Middle School?

14 comments on “Thou Shalt Not Reward Straight A’s

  1. They learned that education is a game; that their hard-earned, personal accomplishments are something to feel guilty about and must be shared with the lazy losers; that the individual no longer matters in society; and that being an obedient member of the State is not only what is required but that the losers are “entitled” to the glory of the winners. Some may have even learned why bother? Yowsa.

  2. Nothing in lie is fair. One kid from my neighborhood had a terrible set of disadvantages in life, in spite of his family being quite prosperous. He’s had a rough life, and it breaks my heart, but that’s the way it is.

    Some children learn more readily than others. Some are smarter than others. Some are better adapted to the style of teaching in the public schools than others. Outcomes will vary accordingly. One reason for grading students was/is to encourage achievement. A “C” student might apply themselves to becoming a “B” student. An “A” student might start thinking in terms of their adult life while still in grade school and prepare accordingly. It’s not uncommon for doctors to have been interested in medicine from and early age and to have chosen biology electives as soon as they were offered.

    Rewarding everyone equally certainly does not prepare them for life in the real world. Life is tough, even for the capable and certainly tougher for some than others. attempting to cast a different impression upon youngsters is a disservice.

    1. Yeah, but if everybody gets a trophy with “You’re a winner!” on it, no one will ever experience shame or disappointment and we will all be happy and fulfilled and there will be Social Justice everywhere [interrupted by men in white coats]…

    2. And soon, everyone will think the same, look the same, act the same, talk the same, walk the same, wear the same uniforms . . .

      Mission accomplished.

  3. I sub teach in all 29 of the public schools in our district. All the elementary schools have award banquets for grades at the end of each month. It is bedlam. Most the kids see it as a time to get out of their boring class.

    1. In the school district where I worked, they called it “Enrichment.” It is not possible that the experience enriched anyone in any way.

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