Student Perspective: The GPA Game

Students aiming for the top 10 percent often have to play the GPA game.

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Students aiming for the top 10 percent often have to play the GPA game.

Jenna Jaffray, News Editor

We either are the person or know the person that takes an enormous amount of advanced classes just for the 15 quality points.

Do I support it? No. Do I condemn it? Also a no.

It’s an odd topic, talking about what’s referred to as the “GPA Game” that many are playing. And indeed, many are manipulating their GPA to how they want it by taking more advanced classes.

But most of these people are taking classes they aren’t even interested in, they’re solely wanting the boost for their rank. It’s come to a point where a student would rather sit through a Pre-AP or AP class for an entire year for a subject they hate than take a “level” class for a subject they’re passionate about.

This mentality severely limits students, and personally, I think it can become rather idiotic.

I suppose you could accuse me of taking “too many” advanced classes, because yes, I do care about my GPA. But I’m also taking non-advanced classes in subjects I love, because I don’t care about my rank enough to sacrifice my high school experience.

This is mainly an issue for people at the top of their class. The problem is that most of these students overlook the amazing health, business, agriculture, or journalism classes offered at the school because they want to keep their rank, or even move up places.

But high school is about more than how many quality points you’re getting. High school is supposed to be a time to find what you love and discover what you want to do for the rest of your life. But how can students do that when they’re so worried about their GPA?

It calls into question whether high schools and colleges should continue placing so much emphasis on grades, rank, and GPA. Everyone says that extracurricular matter just as much as grades, but if that were true, why do both A&M and UT have automatic acceptance to people with better grades?

And this isn’t necessarily a fixable problem, either. GPA has been and will continue to be a major factor into college admission, and students know that.

High school is only four years of your life. The experience shouldn’t be shaped by the worry of level classes, and how they’ll affect your rank.