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Making honor roll could get tougher at Shaler Area

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By Bethany Hofstetter
Wednesday, March 5, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
 

It soon might be harder for Shaler Area High School students to make the honor roll each quarter.

Administrators are discussing changing the honor roll system to limit the number of students who are eligible to the top 30 percent of the class instead of having honor roll status based on a student's grade-point average.

Under the current system, an average of 60 to 65 percent of the student population make the honor roll.

“It got us to think that might be inverted for what a true honor roll is,” said Tim Royall, high school principal. “It still would be a significant number of children receiving honors (with the proposed changes), but we feel it would more accurately reflect honor.”

The current system grants honor roll status to students who receive a grade-point average, or GPA, of 3.0 to 3.49, high honor for GPAs of 3.5 to 3.85 and highest honor for GPAs of 3.86 and higher.

However, with the weighted grading system, students can earn a GPA of more than 5.0.

In the first quarter of this school year, 63 percent of students made the honor roll. In the senior class, the status of highest honor went to 108 students who earned a 3.86 to 5.08 GPA, 66 students received the status of high honor, and 90 students were on the honor roll.

The proposed system would grant highest honor to the top 10 percent of the class, high honor to the top 11 to 20 percent and honor to the top 21 to 30 percent. Students who receive a “D,” “F” or incomplete grade on their report card would be ineligible for the honor roll.

Under the proposed system, only 114 of the 387 seniors would have made the honor roll. The 38 senior students in the top 10 percent of the class who would have received highest honor had a GPA 4.38 to 5.08. Students who would have had high honor under the proposed system earned a GPA of 3.81 to 4.06.

School board members expressed concern about limiting the honor roll and how it might affect students applying for college. School board member April Kwiatkowski, who is chairwoman of the education committee, requested that administrators discuss the proposed change with the high school counselors before the board votes.

“I'm in full support of this; my only concern is the counselors (opinion),” Kwiatkowski said.

The proposed change to the honor roll system will be discussed at the Committee of the Whole meeting of the school board on Wednesday, March 12. The next voting meeting is Wednesday, March 19.

Bethany Hofstetter is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6364 or bhofstetter@tribweb.com.

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