Class Rank: Harmful or Beneficial?

Kamrynn Hentges and Meredith Hoskens

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The Friendswood Independent School District is considering removing class rank as soon as the 2019-2020 school year. The controversial topic evoked many questions as to why the school board has made this hefty decision.

I feel like they are getting rid of it because it has become too competitive and academic focused,” Mrs. Osborne said.

Eliminating class rank will open a door for students to be able to explore their interests rather than only taking classes that contribute to raising their class rank. The goal is to create a system where the student is free to explore his or her options.

“When we don’t rank our students, it forces those higher education institutions to look at the whole student,” Assistant Superintendent of Secondary Education Diane Myers said. “So our beliefs are to look at the student as a whole individually and celebrate kid’s passions and strengths instead of their GPA.”

Friendswood High School’s academic platform is more advanced than other school’s, so using the ranking system is considered unnecessary and seems unfair to most.

“Class rank here isn’t equivalent to any other schools’ ranking system so top 10%, here is like top 3% in any other school,” senior Dani Chytilova said.

“Instead of looking at rank locally at the high school population we should have a statewide system to make it more fair because the top 10% at one school is completely different at other districts,” Osborne said.

Cheating has become a serious issue among students, since it’s become such a prominent factor, many correlate class rank to be tainted.

“90% in the top only get there by cheating and don’t deserve to be so high up in rank. It puts unnecessary pressure on students to achieve a specific rank when it doesn’t even matter at all,” Chytilova said.

Others believe that class rank helps establish echelon, which is beneficial for the student.

“I do think you should be able to know where you stand amid your peers. It is natural to want to know if you are at the top or bottom of the pack,” Osborne said.

Since class rank won’t be implemented for the 2019-2020 school year, the consistent undertones of competition might decrease.

“Ultimately, I think it is parents pushing kids to achieve a higher rank by taking weighted courses and not looking at non-weighted courses. I say this as a parent and a teacher,” Osborne said.