Could Canceling Midterm and Final Exams Damage Student College Entrance Possibilities?

Recently, New Jersey Glen Ridge High School officials have decided to discard the requirement of completing midterm and final exams. The goal of the school district is provide additional time to prepare for standardized testing. The real problem is that no one knows the exact outcome for this new initiative and it could damage student college entrance possibilities. Students at the Glen Ridge High School celebrated the decision. Students will no longer feel the pressures associated with the cycle of midterm and final exams. In the long run this may make them lazy and backfire against the school district and the students.

This decision will also impact college preparation because many colleges use final exams and midterms exams. The midterm can serve several purposes. First, it can tell students if they should adjust their study habits for the rest of the term or maintain them (if they perform poorly or well, respectively). It can also serve to tell a student who does very poorly to drop the class (many colleges have the last chance to drop classes a week or two after the first midterm). Also, midterms allow students to study for less material at semester’s end, in those courses where the final examination is not cumulative. Furthermore, it gives feedback to the teacher or professor about their teaching style. Teachers may also give multiple exams, such as two or three, which makes each test really a third or quarter term exam. Most Glen Ridge High School students will lack the discipline to have success in college because of the lack of successfully completing midterm and final exams.

Another consideration for eliminating midterm and final exams is how it will impact college entrance. Many colleges use the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) scores as a barometer for how well students will do in their first year as a freshman. This test is taken in high school which measures literacy and writing skills that are needed for success in college. The SAT assesses how well the test takers analyze and solve problems—skills they learned in school that they will need in college. Colleges use the SAT in combination with high school grade point averages (GPA) to provide a better indicator of success in college. Removal of midterm and final exams will have an impact on the students GPA and colleges may either frown upon or feel that the students who are not required to take midterm and final exams may not be better prepared for college when compared to other students who are required to complete midterm and final exams.

While many teachers are relieved, it will cause challenges with grading. The midterm and final exams were the assessment that supposedly guided instruction. Now teachers will have to rely more heavily on homework, classwork, quizzes, and classroom participation. Teachers may find themselves the object of confrontation with some parents. When grading time surfaces, for those students who made up for missed assignments through midterm and final exams that opportunity no longer exists. Parents will become angry with the teacher and the new grading structure which can become an embarrassment for the entire school district.

On the other hand, teachers are probably just as excited as the students. No longer do they have to prepare students for the midterm and final exams. Now the teachers only has to wait until the beginning of spring to prepare students for the state assessment. Teachers will find that they will have more time to do things that they desire to do. They will be able to leave the school more often for lunch and maybe watch more TV during their planning period.

The fallacy with removing the necessity of midterm and final exams is not the removal itself, but the process that the Glen Ridge High School is using. The Glen Ridge High School must pilot the initiative before full implementation. Since this is the first year for testing of ninth graders in Language Arts and Math, I would start there. In this way you are provided an opportunity to master the new initiative and work out any kinks.

Follow the following steps to pilot the removal of midterm and final exams.

  1. Choose a pilot group amongst the ninth grade students
  2. Choose the teachers who will pilot the new initiative
  3. Implement a shared vision process for participating teachers
  4. Develop the strategic plan over a nine month period
  5. Finalize a culminating activity where participating teachers are provided an opportunity to share the strategic plan for successfully eliminating midterm and final exams.

Related Articles

N.J. High School Cancels Midterm and Final Exams

State Drops Midterms, Finals to Prepare for Common Core Testing

East Hampton One Of Few Local School Districts To Eliminate Midterms And Finals

Looking Beyond Midterms

Dr. Derrick L. Campbell, Ed.D.
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PO Box 1668 Blackwood, NJ 08012

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About Classroom Racism Exterminator

Racism is a menace and so we’ve been taught for ages which is the primary need for a diversity expert. However, even in this modern society of today where we see a lot of colored celebrities performing on stage with huge fan followings and of course an Afro-America President for the USA, we are still in a phase where racism exists in all its brutal glory and has been eating away at the society like a plague. Classrooms, are one of the most affected areas where color differences and racism exists to its extremes. Even after decades of progress and a lot of communal efforts at bridging the gaps between colored students, white students and teachers, it is sad to say that the disparities still exist and are just as pronounced today as they were back in the 1950s. Colored students, even in the likes of New York City, are attending under resourced schools or have been significantly isolated and made to be unequal in regular schools. Even if the teachers are well-intentioned, perpetuating the structural racism that has taken deep roots into the fabric of our education system is a tough task and make the need for a diversity expert imperative. Teachers need to recognize the biases that exist within the classroom and also take conscious measures to address them and their own biases of course. James Baldwin once said, “it is your very own responsibility to change this society, if you think of yourself as an educated person.” Dr. Derrick L. Campbell took this quote very effectively and straight to the heart and thus this Classroom Racism Exterminator happened. Classroom Racism Exterminator is an initiative that will teach you about your duty and moral obligation towards eliminating racism from the classrooms. This is where and how you will learn about what you need to do to produce a better society that is free of biases and disparities amongst the blacks and the whites. Because we understand how classroom biases and conversations about racism are difficult and how teachers and students almost avoid the topics altogether, we have put together a range of effective methods and products to help address the problem at hand and talk meaningfully to counter issues related to race and racism in the classroom. Diversity expert Dr. Campbell understands that it takes a lot of courage to talk about race and racism and that racial issues need to be viewed through a very critical lens that can understand and attend to the pertaining aspects of racism in the classroom. And therefore through this website we have made a conscious effort to eliminate racism from the classroom and make the educational system equal and beneficial for all. We know and we understand that there are no words that can actually describe how racism feels. There are cases and everybody tends to deal with it in their own manner. Some might lash out verbally or others might just withdraw into shells. Whatever the case, people don’t talk about it openly and teachers don’t really make a conscious effort at addressing the issue. We don’t really know if our children or if the youth is learning to be educated or become racists in their classroom. Our program is focused on helping children of color and regardless of their race, their full potential. We want every student to be able to recognize and reach their full potential so that they think of themselves as responsible citizens of their country and not regard themselves as worthless human beings. Here you will find motivational books and flash card games, all of which have been designed focusing on eliminating racism completely from our classrooms. The books and the games have been consciously designed keeping in mind the American society and educational system. It is a small effort on our and Dr. Campbell’s part to help this society become a better place to live in. A little about diversity expert Dr. Campbell Dr. Derrick L. Campbell the driving force behind Classroom Racism Exterminator is a dynamic figure and a constant source of motivation for us. He has a Bachelors of Science in Electronics Engineering Technology, Math Education, a Masters in Education Administration and also holds a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership. Dr. Campbell is a well known personality throughout the nation. He has lectured at various events including the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Iron Sharpens Iron Men’s Conference and a lot of local churches. He is a personality well dedicated towards eliminating the plague of racism from our classrooms and helping every child recognize his/her true potential not the color of their skin. He realizes how a child would feel if he/she was made to think they are worthless human beings. Diversity expert Dr. Campbell is compassionate and related to the experiences and therefore this initiative is a constant and continual effort to eliminate racism manifested in us, completely from the classroom and from our society.
This entry was posted in Classroom Management, Core Curriculum Standards, Final Exams, Leadership and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Could Canceling Midterm and Final Exams Damage Student College Entrance Possibilities?

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