Classes clash concerning collective cumulative to calculate GPA


Kara Timberlake

Mrs. Colton’s honors history students working hard.

Much debate has circulated about the way grades should be calculated. Should honors students get the same quality point as AP students?

The Pinellas County School Board system came to the decision on February 25th of changing the ranking of honors, Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate classes. As of right now, all classes (honors, AP, and International Baccalaureate)  have the same quality point that affects GPA.

The issue has long been thought about, beginning back in February of last year, when Superintendent Mike Grego said that they might change the system. Grego said that  if the weighting system was changed, honors classes would be worth more than regular but less than AP and International Baccalaureate classes.

The change will not affect current high school students but will apply to incoming freshman, entering the 2014-2015 school years. The change will affect class rankings and scholarships.

Mr. Stewart, who teaches several AP Classes and Honors classes including Literature & the Arts Honors , English 2 Honors  and AP Art History said,  “People in AP classes work harder than people in Honors. My history class has to work  harder and knows more complex information than students in literature and the arts class.”  He gave an example and said , “In Literature and the Arts we study the Merode art piece (which is an early Renaissance work). In AP Art History we study Merode art, Ghent art and Portonari art  pieces and students need to understand the context and symbolism of all 3.”

Micheala Ippolito, 10th grade, said, “I may take dual enrollment next year.” She also said that knowing that AP students will get an extra quality point, “definitely encouraged” her to consider doing it next year.

The school board agreed on Tuesday, according to the Tampa Bay Times’ website, “with no discussion”. Grego  said that “It makes sense. Most school districts have it that way.”

An interesting fact is that, according to Grego, “The state already requires that AP, IB and dual-enrollment be weighted the same. School districts have discretion with honors classes.