OHS plans to eliminate class rank

Class rank compares student’s academic performance to others in their class using percentiles. While the class rank may help a few, OHS is planning to get rid of it for the 2017-2018 school year.

OHS is getting rid of class rank because the school board believes that getting rid of rank will allow students to benefit academically. This way, students can focus on succeeding personally rather than chasing a certain rank.

Students will benefit from the removal of class rank because it opens them to more scholarship opportunities. While students will still have to apply, meet the criteria and go through standardized testing, getting rid of the class rank will open more scholarships because it allows students to appear personally successful opposed to being compared to their peers. Often times students just take weighted classes to raise their GPA in order to raise their class rank. Some students take these classes even when the class has no relevance to what they want to do after they graduate.

Getting rid of rank will hopefully take away the stress of overworking to reach a certain GPA. OHS guidance counselor Stephen King says a good, solid and recommended GPA is a 3.5 or higher. OHS counselors said schools with rankings cause stress by chasing a high GPA and class rank.

“I do not see any disadvantages to this. There are scholarships for ranking and ranking schools and students are not being hurt,” King said.

OHS is focusing more on preparing students for college, preparing students academically, and pertaining those academics to their future careers. According to King, this will allow students to be more prepared for college than ever before. He says that college is hard enough without grade struggles, having students academically prepared will put those students ahead. Having the opportunity to take classes for an interest instead of taking an honors or advanced placement class will allow students to push themselves where they want to be pushed.

A majority of colleges look at core classes and GPA, so high schools without class rank are not at a disadvantage.

Even though King has been pushing to get rid of class rank for the last six or seven years, the decision was not up to him but rather the school board. Some of the board members disagreed with King’s opinion, but with the many changes happening next year, class rank will be one of them.

“Students are so focused on chasing a rank number, that they take classes that boosts their GPA instead of classes that interest them. I think getting rid of class rank is a good idea,” Anna Gordon (12) said.