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Re: Is it illegal for students to grade other students' papers?


Date: Fri Jun 22 2001 - 15:10:28 PDT

One of the interesting things about being both a teacher and a parent is that
sometimes you get to see both sides of an issue. My son had a situation in
one of his classes (English/Reading)when he was in middle school in which a
teacher allowed students to not only switch papers for grading, but to grade
their own. She also allowed students to write the correct answers on the
papers as well, while they were grading them.
    Much to my dismay, she gave my son zeroes on several important class
assignments--said she thought he was cheating--which he was not, by the way,
which he could prove. She totally embarassed my child in front of his peers.
In a parent/teacher conference, we respectfully asked that our son NOT grade
any of his own papers, nor help her grade her own. That was her job. We
wanted her to do it.
   So, whenever an assignment was to be graded in class--ALL his classes, by
the way, we asked our son to politely turn the paper in and wait until it was
graded. He did not act disrespectfully in any way, just handed her the
paper. This lasted for about three weeks, at which time, we were called into
the counselor's office--the teacher had gone to complain that perhaps we had
lost faith in her teaching abilities.(Which we had not, but were "miffed", as
you'd probably expect. Until that time, I had volunteered in her
room--running off papers, errands--no grading, though. I quit, btw.)
Perhaps our son needed to be moved to another teacher "team". What if
everyone in her classes had done that? she complained. What if ALL the
children's parents requested that this teacher grade her own papers? She had
SO many students! (I laugh at that, remembering that I have over 400.)
     I leave it for you to decide how you feel about students grading each
other's work, but it seems to me that it is subjective and can leave the
door wide open to misinterpretation.
All the best,