In Baltimore, local media are reporting that a student with a 0.13 GPA ranked in the top half of his class. After finishing four years of high school, district officials shocked this student (who is not named, though his mother, Tiffany France, is quoted in the story) and his family when they sent him back to ninth grade, saying he lacked enough credits to graduate.
Questions abound: Why was the student moved to the next grade from one year to the next? Why were the parents not informed earlier?
And perhaps most importantly, why was he not the only one? This student had 58 classmates with GPAs at this dismal level. In a sad indictment of a school where “no one…told France her son was failing and not going to class,” France said her son “feels like a failure.”
Examples such as these are only useful if they represent the whole, and sadly, this case may not be extreme. The Nation’s Report Card showed historic declines in September when results found that 9-year-old scores had fallen drastically in math and reading.