The Importance of Grades

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Who really cares about grades? Personally, all I care about is trying your best. I know a lot of people who really care about grades and I kind of find it amusing and a bit bewildering. All these people who talk about grades and how important they are and how they had great grades 100 years ago really aren’t any better off than the people I know, including myself, who didn’t have amazing grades. So, really what is up with the extra pressure, stress, and judgment related to grades if it doesn’t matter?

How many wildly successful people do you know who say, they were a straight A student, top of their class, etc…. If you are like me, you probably can think of way more people who are super successful that don’t fit the mold. Most of the people I can think of who are wildly successful or even just more successful than most don’t fit that mold at all.

With that being said I have definitely seen some correlation between some social skills, personal connections, and a few other attributes that are one hundred percent not related to grades. Wait, I take that back, if you and your child are planning Ivy League then grades may get you there, but I’m not sure they matter much once you are there because the big advantages seems to be connections and/or getting to put the prestigious name of the school on your resume. And let’s be real, what percentage of people is that?

To me, school is about getting the fundamentals, and getting the certificate that is necessary for moving on to the next step of your choice. Growing up my goal was to work to make good enough grades to reach the next step, which for me I was sure was college thanks to a Granny that said “when” and not “if” in regards to my future college attendance.

I realize there are a lot of people who have self worth tied to grades and to them I say, you are and always have been more than a letter on a piece of paper. We are all more than the sum of a single aspect. Think about all the skills and talents that aren’t captured by grades. As a parent, I prefer to have my child focus on learning to be a good person, trying new things, figuring out her passions, and learning to push through even when things are hard. Those are the things I value.

This is strictly my opinion, and I would love to hear what others think.

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