Do Grades Determine Success?


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Julia Gonzalez, Reporter

Grades are often seen as a measure for success in students. The students with the best grades are often attributed to having the brightest futures while students’ lower grades are often seen as more likely to be unsuccessful, but do grades really measure student success?

It’s undeniable that grades directly correlate with hard work in school. To maintain grades, you must keep up with homework and pay attention in class which shows dedication and work ethic, two key components to success. Studies also show that academic performance in high school usually can predict performance in college, which seemingly supports that grades are directly correlated with success; but what about the kids who don’t have any interest in college? To say that grades determine a student’s success is to assume that all students are focused on an academic career. Success is not defined by having a higher academic career, it is just being the best you can be at what you do, which doesn’t always require good grades in school. There are some very respected careers such as owning your own business, that doesn’t require an academic degree at all.

While some believe those who don’t have good grades in school are just slacking off, in a lot of cases this is far from the truth. According to the University of Washington students with “worse” grades, are more likely to be working 20 or more hours a week. Students that begin their employment in high school often have less time to go the extra mile to boost their grades but that does not make them unsuccessful; in fact, having a job in high school teaches a lot of the same skills that working for good grades does such as dedication and work ethic.

Grades are certainly a great tool in building hard-working students but it’s not the only tool for success. Every student is different, some excel in school, and some excel in other areas; because of this, not every student will have straight As and that’s okay. There are many ways for one to be successful, some find it through doing well in school and others find it through working a job so grades on their own, do not determine one’s success.