I am getting a lot of emails from unhappy college and grad students, mostly from Georgia Tech and the state’s public law schools . Those students are upset because the University System of Georgia has refused to offer a pass/fail option, as hundreds of colleges, including the most elite in the country, are doing.

Grades are critical to law students because their class rankings influence their job opportunities. Grades are important to Georgia Tech because, well, it’s Georgia Tech.

See my post about how the USG position on grading for the online courses now underway is at odds with many other places.

Most colleges have acknowledged that not all students have returned to home situations that support distance learning. Many are giving their students the choice of a letter grade or pass/fail.

Local Georgia Tech parent Cynthia Stuckey sent me a note about her concerns, which I asked if I could share here. She hits all the key points about why a pass/fail option is needed, and I hope USG will consider her persuasive arguments.

By Cynthia Stuckey

My oldest child is in his second year at Georgia Tech, and I remain concerned for a number of reasons about the refusal to allow a pass/fail option.

First, while mental health concerns are certainly germane to all college students, Georgia Tech, in particular, has struggled to find its footing vis a vis appropriate resource allocation on the issue of student mental health.

That the adequacy of the Institute’s response to these mental health concerns has been written of in the AJC some half dozen times in the last 18 months only highlights the significant work to be done. Surely, in this time of national crisis, when the only thing of which most of us are certain is our own overwhelming sense of uncertainty, it should not be difficult to recognize the inordinate emotional weight under which many students are laboring.That the allowance of a one-semester accommodation in grading policy seems an insurmountable obstacle for the USG begs the question of how seriously our state universities are taking the mental health of students. This is particularly hard to […]

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