Wellesley Public Schools Superintendent David Lussier says he hopes to explore some of the underlying issues of high school GPA weighting as part of the strategic plan process that recently launched.
“With this in mind, I don’t anticipate any changes for the 2013-2014 school year,” he told us by email (after we sheepishly pestered him about this during school vacation week).
Wellesley School Committee Chair Diane Campbell doesn’t foresee the committee initiating any action on the GPA issue outside of the strategic plan either.
Last spring the specter of Wellesley High School doing away with weighted grade point averages became a big topic of discussion in town, with the school forming a GPA committee and issuing a survey to get feedback. The School Committee expressed its interest in hearing more about the topic, which boils down to calculating the GPA with or without consideration to how difficult courses are that students take. Some argue that honors students get cheated on the GPA front if all class grades are treated equally, while others say that colleges do their own figuring anyway, plus take course levels into consideration when looking at transcripts.
Wellesley has a maximum 5.0 GPA system, unlike the more common 4.0 scale. Other local school systems, such as Lexington, have switched to an unweighted GPA and others, like Newton, use both.
No formal action wound up being taken in Wellesley last year, with outgoing school superintendent Bella Wong saying the decision to make a formal proposal would fall to her successor. The idea that had been discussed was that any change would only be applied to incoming classes, not current high school students.
To have your voice heard on this and other topics that might be included in the Wellesley strategic plan, attend one of the upcoming Listening Forums:
- February 25th, 7pm at WHS Auditorium
- March 5th, 7pm at Wellesley Free Library
- March 8th, 9am at Wellesley Free Library