[etni] [FWD: Re: giving school ("magen" grades)]

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 -------- Original Message --------
 Subject: Re: giving school ("magen" grades)
 From: "Rita G. Braunstein" <ritabr@xxxxxxx>
Thanks to Laurie for describing the situation in what I believe is 
common in many schools.  Up until last year I 'went with the 
flow' and gave Magen grades according to their expected Bagrut 
grade.  Last year I finally put my foot down and gave a school 
grade that the pupils deserved  - sometimes a lot higher than 
the Bagrut grade but, more important, for some pupils it was
a lot lower than their potential Bagrut grade if they were not 
attending class, handing in assignments and not making any 
effort.  Can I say it felt good? Certainly not.  But I am convinced 
that this is more fair in the long run and although it hurts me to 
be 'mean', I will continue from now on.
Rita Braunstein

Laurie wrote:
> > School Grades ("Magen")
> >
> > Just like Aviva Shapiro has written, we had a situation 3 years
> > ago (?) (the second to the last year of the 'old' bagrut test) where
> > many of the 12th grade 4 point students (spread over 2 classes)
> > were convinced they didn't have to bother with book reports,
> > literature, homework, or even acceptable behavior in the classroom.
> > It was just one of those years, where the dominant tone of the class
> > was set by those who don't study rather than those who do.
> > For a few it became ideological - why put in extra effort into anything
> > besides practice tests, which is what our grades should reflect?
> > Try to convice students like this that what is not on the bagrut but
> > required by the Ministry as part of their final class grade is
> > important.
> > (This is a huge problem for us, in general, the fact that there are all
> > these requirements for their school grade which are unrelated to what
> > they are tested on for the bagrut).
> >
> > In short, because of the discrepancies between class grades and
> > bagrut scores, the students who didn't fulfill bagrut requirements and
> > didn't study much that year were the big winners. 90% was their
> > bagrut score and 10% was their class grade. The message to me was
> > to inflate grades. This infuriates me, lowers standards and sends the
> > message to students that they will get what they don't deserve in the
> > end anyway. The reply from the Ministry was that there must be
> > something wrong with the way we taught.  I think there is something
> > wrong with being expected to teach one  set of things and being
> > tested on another.
> >
> > I subsequently began to pay more attention to this probem, of course.
> > I have heard how other schools  'encourage" their teachers to make
> > students grades fit their prospected bagrut scores.  At English
> > conferences I detected from teachers' remarks, that the non - bagrut
> > related requirements were not always being taken seriously or even
> > taught. Every year since then, I secretly hope that only a small
> > percentage of students will have this gap between class grade and
> > bagrut score, so that I don't have to face this moral dilemna over
> > again.

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