USA Today has an article up about new school policies regarding the minimum grade possible. Instead of allowing scores below 50, this new “minimum 50” policy would have 50 be the lowest score possible. The reasoning given in the article is that having a score range from 0 - 59 makes getting an F six times as likely as getting any other score. As John Gruber of Daring Fireball points out in ‘Minimum 50’ Grading Polices,
The issue with grades and testing is placing emphasis on the grade, and not on the knowledge, or lack thereof, it represents. Tests should help teacher and student both, understand what material isn’t understood fully. Ideally, there would be time to return to the just-tested material and review it again. Something, I fear, that isn’t done in most circumstances.
Douglas Reeves, and the school boards rolling this minimum 50 plan out, should all receive falling grades - numerically and otherwise.