Now that the new Aspen X2 grading system is up and going and we're finally getting some grades, it appears that our son's English teacher (Am Lit) is one who likes to make a point by giving out lots of flunking grades. (What is it with English teachers? His freshman English teacher did this too.) You can find all sorts of horrible comments about him on RateMyTeachers. As far as I can tell, it's a game and that you have to pass the test. You have to make an appointment with the teacher and go in after school to show effort. I imagine that parents dare not go in to get answers. After starting the year with some of the highest grades, he has been hit with one flunking grade and one really bad grade. The teacher apparently doesn't hand back work with comments. He puts a code on the test so that if you go in to see him, he can use the code to refer to his notes. It has to be after school. I find that bizarre. Last year, when a paper interviewed the valedictorian, she specifically referred to this teacher and how she got flunking grades from him when she was a freshman. By the end of the year, she was proud that she managed to bring her grade up to an A. She thought that this taught her to work hard. This is a teacher who checks work before the due date and grades kids on whether they are procrastinating and waiting until the last minute.
So, my question is whether others have seen this sort of behavior and what solutions they came up with. My feeling is that our son has to play the game and jump through the hoops even though my first reaction is to go in and ask the teacher what the hell he is doing. Whatever it is, he has been doing it (and getting away with it) for many years.