In an effort to combat racial discrimination the San Diego Unified School District last week announced plans to abolish the traditional grading system, Fox News reports.
According to the data, black students received D or F grades 20 percent of the time and hispanic students received them 23 percent of the time, while white students received them 7 percent of the time and asian students received them 6 percent of the time from the first semester of the last school year, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.
Under the district’s new system, students will not be penalized for failing to complete assignments and factors like classroom behavior will not be counted toward their overall academic grade. A student’s citizenship grade will replace their academic grade.
SDUSD Vice President Richard Barrera said the overhaul represents the district’s “honest reckoning.”
“If we’re actually going to be an anti-racist school district, we have to confront practices like this that have gone on for years and years,” Barrera said. “I think this reflects a reality that students have described to us and it’s a change that’s a long time coming.”
The new system, which affects mostly middle school and high school students, will be implemented over this year and next.
According to NBC San Diego, student School Board Member Zachary Patterson, who is also a junior at University City High School said feedback from his peers is positive.
“I know students all across the school district are really happy with the idea that these other accountability measures are no longer going to be defining their understanding of knowledge,” said Patterson.
In the future students may not be penalized for cheating, as the board will be reviewing “potential student disparities” stemming from its existing zero-tolerance disciplinary policy on cheating in the coming weeks.