Debate and Discussion

Edline: Now parents can see all their kids grades!
LIZARD_B1TE at 6:41AM, Feb. 13, 2009
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That's right! Edline! It started a few years ago and has spread like wildfire since! Basically, it allows parents to see all the grades their teenagers get in school, as soon as said grades are entered into the gradebook. It has revolutionized high school education by allowing parents to become more involved with their kids' lives.

And, of course, it has an excellent business strategy: create an entire generation of people who despise their product! Genius!

Wait, what?

I don't think a single kid in my school likes edline. A fair portion of them despise it with all their soul. Even some teachers at my school have expressed dislike at the damn thing. The only people I have met who actually like it are the parents, despite the fact that, for the most part, all it does is raise their blood pressure.

Now, before you just write this off as some rant by a disgruntled high school kid, I ask you to just take a look at my grievances. I apologize if this comes off as immature, but, in all fairness, I really am a disgruntled high school kid. But I wouldn't be, if I didn't have reason to hate this thing, right?

1. Education has moved on
My parents are often baffled by the things I'm learning in school. Education has advanced greatly, and parents simply do not understand. At all. Whether it's because education is so different nowadays, or because it's been so long since parents went to school, or a combination of both, parents have difficulty understanding exactly how their kid's daily lives at school work.

Take, for example, math. Geometry and Algebra are too very different classes. Depending on how your brain works, you might be really good at one but terrible at another. Granted, there are quite a few people who excel at both or fail at both, but most parents have difficulty comprehending that these are two very different classes.

This also happens with foreign language classes. God forbid that my mother is capable of wrapping her head around the fact that Latin 1 (which is mostly vocabulary) bears only a slim resemblance to Latin 3 (which is mostly grammar). Two years of difficulty in that class and my mom still somehow thinks that my trouble with it is only recent.

2. No one is perfect…
…except the parents, apparently. They're the only ones who don't obligations concerning this. Kids are going to screw up and get low grades, and it used to be that when they did, they could always cover it up with a bunch of A grades and when it came time for report cards, they'd have a nice A- or B or something. It could be fixed. There was room for error.

With edline, there is no such thing as room for error. A single low grade is clearly the visible from the moment you get it. Parents don't notice the good grades– as a matter of fact, they seem to take them for granted– instead, they latch onto the bad grades and ignore everything else. Oh, you made an honest mistake? You messed up just this once? It's your only grade that's below a C? Tough luck, you're grounded all week.

And then, there's the responsibilities of the teachers. One mistake in entering the grades, and everything gets screwed up. More than once, I've been punished for “getting an F” on something that did not fail, but which edline claimed I did because the teacher accidentally left the box blank.

What's worse is that sometimes the grades are put on edline before the kid even knows they exist. Ever try waking up to someone yelling at you for something you know nothing about? It's not fun, trust me.

3. Unfairness
Now, I don't mean unfairness in the sense of “It didn't go my way– It's not fair!”. I'm addressing something which is legitimately unfair. I don't see why should be punished for the occasional mistake when the kids who get worse grades than me get away free because their rich parents don't give a damn. Then again, maybe this a private school thing. With the state the economy is in, my parents are practically foaming at the mouth whenever I get a low grade, because it ruins my chances for scholarships. Scholarships which generally go to jocks and kids who have no life outside of school.

4. Stress
Look at all my points, and try to tell me that edline is not stressful. Teenagers already have enough stress in their lives. Edline strains familial relationships and adds unneeded stress to the lives of teenagers. Maybe it's just because the material has been getting harder, but my grades have actually been getting lower ever since edline came into my life. I'm stressed out, and escapism has become my number one most practiced activity. My grades have suffered for it. I try to do better in school and I can't, because my mind refuses to acknowledge the information.

————

So, that's my rant. It feels to get to get this off my chest. Anyone have any opinions about this?
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:38PM
Hakoshen at 7:51AM, Feb. 13, 2009
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On point 1; I agree, since I was in school not that long ago, that every generation is forced to learn many things differently than the one before them. I don't know that my parents knew what a calculator was until they were adults, and I certainly know they never had to deal with advanced calculus and that lovely TI-83.

However the principles of learning are largely the same. The core components of institutional learning haven't changed too radically, so your parents do understand what it was like to be in school and have to learn all these new concepts their parents never had to deal with.

Point 2; Parents aren't perfect, but unfortunatly many parents take the approach when disciplining their children in a dogmatic way; ie. I'm right because I'm right, and there's no room for discussion.

However, people only seeing the bad in something is the way the world works. When something is doing what it's supposed to, everything is fine, and the status quo is upheld. When this equilibrium is broken, there's an uprising. In the effort of restoring that status quo, the one bit of negativity is all that matters. Take a guy who lives his whole life and always obeys the law, is a good person etc. etc. Then in a fit of rage he kills his wife. Any and everything good he ever did is all for nothing. I know that's a more extreme example but it's true, isn't it?

In regards to the teachers making mistakes, well that's just plain unfortunate, but as is the case with all computers, it all boils down to human input in the end.

Point 3; Welcome to Marxism 101. Less fortunate people always have to struggle more to achieve the same, for whatever reason. However, the fact that you're in a private school sheds a bit more light on your entire situation. It may not be fair that your parents are investing more money in your education and thus expect you in turn to put forth a proportionally higher amount of effort, but sadly, it's their money and you're their kid. It's an unfair obligation but it still exists.

Point 4; Life sucks. It's sad, but it's the human condition. The only thing that ever changes is what kind of stress you have. When you're young, you've got school, social development and life that revolves around the two for the most part. When you're older, you trade in education and growth for work and bills. You still have to get up every morning, you still have to go do what people tell you to, and you still have to climb a mountain of bullshit that isn't right and isn't fair.

I can see that these are hard times for you, because they were hard for me too. However, I don't think that this program is the cause for all of your life's ails. It may be a focusing point for other factors, but it's the devil's hand, not his heart. Your parents obviously want you to do well and they're working hard to make it so, so try to appreciate how much time and effort they've put into getting you where you are, despite how it may feel. Sometimes in life, you just have to buckle up and ride on.
God needed the Devil, the Beatles needed the Rolling Stones, Hakoshen needs me.
I'm the enemy he requires to define him.
Soon or later, he'll bring me back to life again for another epic encounter of shouting about power levels and grimacing.
-Harkovast
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:40PM
isukun at 11:29AM, Feb. 13, 2009
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Whether it's because education is so different nowadays, or because it's been so long since parents went to school, or a combination of both, parents have difficulty understanding exactly how their kid's daily lives at school work.

Whether they understand how your school life works or not is irrelevant. Thy understand the most important point, that your education is more important now than ever.

There was room for error.

There was never really room for error. Kids have a tendency to sluff off some classes and take an interest in others. This way a parent finds out early where the problems lie and can push you to do better. Not all kids are responsible enough to make up for their mistakes and in the real world, you aren't granted this kind of leniency. It's better for kids to learn that ANY mistake should be avoided. Don't get too comfortable getting away with half-assed work. The real work is dog-eat-dog and if you aren't strong enough to rise to the top, you get stuck at the bottom or, even worse, never enter the race.

They're the only ones who don't obligations concerning this.

Actually, you are their obligation. You screw up and they're held accountable. You aren't really free until you hit 18. Until then, your parents literally own you.

I don't see why should be punished for the occasional mistake when the kids who get worse grades than me get away free because their rich parents don't give a damn.

So your complaint is that your parents are better parents and expect more from you? They can't provide you with a free ride, so they expect you to work hard to make something of yourself. How awful. I guess it would be better if middle and lower class parents just didn't give a damn and let their kids become gutter trash.

Teenagers already have enough stress in their lives.

That's a laugh. If you think being an adult is any easier, you're going to be in for some serious disappointment. Especially when you get that first kid.

Honestly, I don't see this system as any sort of violation against teens. If anything, it allows parents to be more proactive in their kids lives and in these times, that's a good thing. It's harder to get into the work force, people are looking for more training and more advanced skills. You aren't going to get that failing classes and going to community college.

I can almost guarantee that in 30 years time, when you're going through the same thing with your teenage kid, you're going to be thankful for systems like Edline. I wouldn't be surprised if 99% of your classmates did as well. You can sit there and claim parents don't understand how hard it is, but the truth of the matter is they do. That's the big difference between teens and their parents. The parents have been there before. They've made the same mistakes and have the life experience to know what the repercussions are. Teens don't have that experience. You don't even know much about the stage of life you're currently in, you haven't experienced it before, so all you can do is wing it and hope for the best. Your parents have been there before. They understand how important it is to get on the road to success early on. As a teen, however, you have no frame of reference on what it's like to be a parent. You don't understand where they are coming from or what stress they have to deal with in their day-to-day lives.

so, to make things short:

1. The pressures of teenage life have not changed significantly over the years. Your parents had to deal with the same subjects and the same pressures you do today (and possibly even more so, depending on your parents' age).

2. No one is perfect, but that is not an excuse for mediocrity. Nothing comes from zero effort, even your buddies from the upper class will find that out someday.

3. Life isn't fair, but whining about it won't get you any handouts. You can complain about jocks getting scholarships, but they work hard in their own way, nobody is just naturally gifted when it comes to sports, you still have to train. Concerning the rich, money only gets you so far. At some point, your ability will determine your success in life.

4. Stress is a factor in everyone's life and it won't get easier once you've finished college.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:04PM
radarig at 1:21PM, Feb. 13, 2009
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The only thing I'd add to what Isukun had to say on this is that you really need to develop a sense of personal responsibility.
Someone
my grades have actually been getting lower ever since edline came into my life.
You'll be happier in life if you learn to own up to your own actions. Edline isn't causing you stress, you're causing yourself stress by not being prepared for whatever it is you make a D on.
Someone
I try to do better in school and I can't, because my mind refuses to acknowledge the information.
No, you refuse to acknowledge the information. You're trying to justify it to yourself by blaming your parents for being too hard on you, or a grade reporting service for making what you do more transparent, but anything that happens happens due to your actions. Don't try to skirt that.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:58PM
StaceyMontgomery at 2:25PM, Feb. 13, 2009
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I went to school long before there was an internet, and yet somehow my parents knew what grades i got. I do not see how edline makes things much different. I guess i can think of one time they were really surprised that I got a bad grade… but surely edline would have made that better, since they would not have been so surprised when the bad news came, and I would not have been so badly punished.

So far, it sounds like edline is a maybe slight improvement over pre-edline.

let's call it a wash.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:55PM
imshard at 4:10PM, Feb. 13, 2009
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I feel you Lizard bite, i really do. Education is a tough area.

From what I see Edline is little different than the report cards school children have been getting for a long time. Its just a digitization of yet another facet of our lives. Your points are valid but have less to do with an online utility than your parents. Somehow I think they'd react the same to a written GPA sheet as a webpage.

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last edited on July 14, 2011 12:58PM
isukun at 4:27PM, Feb. 13, 2009
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I kind of wish they had that kind of system when I was in high school. It would have actually saved me a lot of stress since I wouldn't be worrying about hiding my grades from my parents.

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:04PM
LIZARD_B1TE at 5:34PM, Feb. 13, 2009
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While my goal in this topic was to start a discussion and generally stay out of it beyond my first post (because, hell, it was mostly just a frustration-fueled vent written in the heat of the moment; which isn't to say that I wasn't going to come back and read it), I will clarify something:

radarig
You'll be happier in life if you learn to own up to your own actions. Edline isn't causing you stress, you're causing yourself stress by not being prepared for whatever it is you make a D on.

I apologize if it was worded in a way that made me sound like I was blaming all my problems on one thing. I was actually trying to point out a correlation between my grades and edline. I know that a few kids have had the opposite happen to them, but then again, everybody's different…

I
Maybe it's just because the material has been getting harder, but my grades have actually been getting lower ever since edline came into my life

My decline in grades has multiple factors to it. Myself included. I've also noticed that I've become increasingly angry at everything recently, though I'm not sure whether that's a result of this or part of the cause, since they've occurred almost simultaneously.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go smash my face against a wall until I feel less like strangling the first smiling person I see.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:38PM
FoxmanZEO at 5:41PM, Feb. 13, 2009
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Pff. They had this since my first year of school ever, in one way or annother. Plus, your parents can call at any time to find out everything from your grades to what your teachers think of you in general.

I don't see how this is anything but utilizing modern technology, the diligent parents will still find out as soon as possible, worthless meth heads will still ignore the sky falling.
'Who must do the hard things?

He who can.'


-Confucius.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:30PM
radarig at 8:49PM, Feb. 13, 2009
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Someone
My decline in grades has multiple factors to it. Myself included.
No, yourself alone. Maybe you can rationalize your shortcomings by blaming them on someone or something else, but you're just going to be better off the sooner you realize that it all comes back to you.

I mean, its a lesson you're going to have to learn eventually; the easy way would just be to acknowledge it now. The hard way involves fucking up after you're 18 and having to make your life work on your own.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:58PM
isukun at 9:04PM, Feb. 13, 2009
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The hard way involves fucking up after you're 18 and having to make your life work on your own.

Yep, I know ALLLL about that one. I don't have two BA's for nothing.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:04PM
megan_rose at 12:08AM, Feb. 14, 2009
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I fail to see how this is any different from bringing home a report card, which has been happening for how many generations now? Only this way, there's no chance of you altering it, which kids have done before.
The only thing edline really does is prevent you from lying about your grades. Good.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:59PM
DAJB at 3:37AM, Feb. 14, 2009
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Since my school days were long behind me by the time the internet became so much as a glint in Bill Gates's eye, I never had to worry about my parents checking grades online. They did, however, take a close interest in the grades I got and sometimes that really did feel like a lot of pressure. Was it a bad thing? Looking back on it now, almost certainly not.

When my own children were at school my wife and I received nothing about our children's progress (despite asking for more regular updates) until we received an end of term report. By that time, it was often too late to help them with any subjects they were having difficulty with, or to raise issues with the teachers of those subjects.

As horrible as it must be to feel that Big Brother is looking over your shoulder all the time, on balance, it seems to me that Edline has more pluses than minuses.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:03PM
JoeL_CQB at 11:04AM, Feb. 14, 2009
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eh………..

i on a edge on what lizard, hakoshen, and isukun is saying.

like with point 2 and 3. i don't see how having your parents yelling at you and grounding you would help your grades/ability understand what is being taught. my parents did that to me during my first semester in high school and it did nothing. i did spend that time being grounded studying, but it didn't help because i still didn't understand the text.

later my parents got me a tutor which helped.

and i can't completely agree that parents knowing what it is like being a teen.

there is a certain point where things change. an example would be when I'm applying for colleges. my mom never went to college and my dad didn't finish high school. so none of my parents ever had the experience of going through that. my dad was knew he couldn't really do anything so it was “it's up to you to do this.” and my mom was fretting about my current gpa which was 3.0 and basing everything on her co-worker's experiences which was like 15 years ago. a lot of things changed, so we often would get into arguments about who's doing the right things or the wrong things. 15 years ago it was more about the SAT scores and now it's more about the essays. shit happened and i got into college, everybody is happy.

but i could see why my parents were acting like that because they wanted to help but couldn't do anything.

my mom still calls me up to yell at me for getting a C or B on my GE's. I can't blame her for worrying, but i know what i'm doing.

but aiming this at lizard.

you do have to own up to your own actions. if you slack off in a class don't be surprised to see that your parents are mad because they found out.

i don't see how edline could make your grade turn bad. sure, having the teacher leave stuff in blank and having it show up as an “F” on edline sucks.

but explain it to your parents. or better have your parents meet with your teachers. have you tried talking to you parent's because it seems to me your saying “baw!! edline is ruining my life and my parents don't understand me and hard this is!!!1!”
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:10PM
Kilre at 11:25AM, Feb. 14, 2009
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If you're planning on going on to higher education, it's time to own up now and buckle down. Improve your grades on your own so there is no stress later. If you're having problems, talk with your folks about what you can do, what options you have to help; don't bitch about the system. While you're busy complaining you could be studying.

This Edline shows your problem areas NOW instead of at final report time. Take this knowledge and use it to your advantage.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:15PM
Backstaber at 4:01PM, Feb. 14, 2009
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We had something simialr at my school. Although, and I don't want to brag, I never had problems with it because I kept my grades no lower then B+'s. In fact, (pay attention kiddies) If you get good grades, you get scholarships and then you get your college paid for you or most of it at least. In my case, I don't have to pay a single dime for … with the exception of books.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:15AM
isukun at 7:14PM, Feb. 14, 2009
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I'd be more concerned about getting into the school of your choice than getting an academics-based scholarship. While it is possible, there are more factors that play into them than simply grades. Plus, even if you can't land a scholarship, there are other ways to pay your way through school, they just require you to have a certain level of responsibility to stay the course and make something of yourself at the end.

and i can't completely agree that parents knowing what it is like being a teen.

Just because your parents may have had different problems that doesn't mean they don't know what it is like. From what you're saying, it sounds like your parents are in a pretty good position to understand why it is so important to push you.

i did spend that time being grounded studying, but it didn't help because i still didn't understand the text.

(This isn't necessarily in response to JoeL_CQB) Just because your parents recognize a problem, that doesn't always mean they will necessarily know the right solution. It is their right to get angry when you fail and that should act as an early warning to you that something isn't working. Still, in the long run, it is your life. If their solution doesn't work, it is ultimately up to you to tell them that and work out a solution which does work. There is nothing wrong with telling them you may need further help. If they can't provide the help you need, then you may need a tutor or, as others have said, either you or your parents can talk to your teachers to work out a plan of action. One of the benefits of new technology is that it actually makes it easier for us to reach out.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:04PM
Orin J Master at 4:26PM, Feb. 15, 2009
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i look forward to hearing about the children receiving extra beatings because of this system.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:22PM

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