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Board of Education considering revising weighted grades, class ranking policy

Originally posted April 16, 2019

The Board of Education on first reading Monday, April 16, considered a change to Board Policy 5032 on weighted grades and class ranking procedures. A decision will be expected during second reading at the Board meeting on May 20. To view the proposed policy change, click on the download file button on this page.

Union is seeking public comment. Comments may be shared with

A committee representing parents, teachers and administrators have been meeting as needed for about three years to consider changes to class rankings in an effort to recognize deserving students who might have missed out because of various factors such as extracurricular activities, or because some courses carried more weight than other equitable courses.

The committee’s recommendation proposes a method for determining valedictorian and salutatorian using fixed GPA standards that reflect high performance in rigorous coursework. The change would allow more students to be designated as valedictorian and salutatorian in a way that is recognized by higher education and not dependent on the coursework taken by peers. The data for the past four years show that students who met these criteria included a significant percentage of participants in athletics and fine arts. The committee unanimously approved the recommendation.

The committee’s primary recommendations include:

  • Replace the current method of using the upper 1 % and 2% of the graduating class to determine valedictorian and salutatorian designations with a fixed set of criteria to determine those designations.
  • Students with a weighted GP A of 5.00 and above will be designated as valedictorians. Students with a weighted GP A of 4.80-4.99 will be designated as salutatorians.
  • To be sure that a minimum of 2% of students are selected for valedictorian and salutatorian designations, at least the upper 1 % of students are to be selected for valedictorian and at least a total of the upper 2% of students are to be selected for both valedictorian and salutatorian designations combined.
  • The valedictorian or salutatorian designation will be official only if the above criteria are met on the final high school transcript.

If approved at the next Board meeting, the new policy would affect juniors – the Class of 2020 - increasing the number of students recognized without penalizing any students.