Extra work deserves extra credit

Extra work deserves extra credit

As Advanced Placement (AP) and honors classes grow more popular in OHS, more students are utilizing extra credit points to maintain a good grade in the course. However, when teachers stop offering these supplement points, students are left struggling in a more difficult class with no hope of bettering their grade.

Students who choose to take harder classes, like AP courses, are looking to challenge themselves, have an opportunity at college credit, or boost their class rank. Though this is a choice, the mounting pressure of getting a head start on college to save money or impressing admission officers with a weighted grade point average (GPA) are encouraging more students to take these classes.

For high school students with no previous knowledge of the subject matter in most cases, extra credit is a way to even the playing field or give incentive. Doing extra work, learning outside of class time about subject matter, or performing above and beyond expectations should be considered as opportunities for extra credit in these more difficult courses.

“You guys are still high school kids,” said Mrs. Angelia Moore, AP U.S. History teacher, about students deserving extra credit. “I don’t offer very much, [but] it’s a little bit of a carrot to keep you guys involved in the material.”

Moore offers extra credit to students who attend “Dinner and a Movie,” an after school educational film where snacking is allowed, as one of a few extra credit opportunities in her class. Other teachers around OHS share the belief that students in harder classes deserve a chance to keep their grades up, even if it was the student’s choice to take the course.

Yet other teachers around the school are adamant on no extra credit policies. It is their belief that students choose to take these challenging and college level courses, and that they must earn their grade without help from supplement points or bonuses. Extra credit is supposedly not an accurate reflection of a grade, and therefore should not be offered, just as it is not offered in college.

Despite these policies targeted to give a true grade, the students in this school are still at a high school level, on a high school campus, with high school teachers; they are not attending a university and paying for credit hours, books, or a degree. Support should be offered to students in the form of extra credit for these difficult courses, if only for the sake of leveling the bridge between the high school and college level to give the younger students a fair chance at an A.