Students upset about midterm policy change at Cape Coral high schools
CAPE CORAL, Fla. - This student claims school officials never told her and others they'd have to take the midterm exams. That even the student handbook says those with an "A" average are exempt from the tests.
"I was really mad and everyone in the class was really mad," said Alyssa Duckett, 17, a senior at North Fort Myers High School.
Alyssa had been looking forward to her final weeks of high school. She'll be making the transition to college a semester early.
"The whole time i've been thinking i have an "A" average and i won't have to take any of my midterms," explained Alyssa. "I don't have to come the last week but now they changed it."
So, imagine Alyssa and mom Nancy Tracey's frustration when they learned a long-time midterm exam policy had changed. Now, all North Fort Myers seniors must take the tests, regardless of their GPA.
"It's been a tradition and we were expecting not to take the midterms but now it's just like a shock," added Alyssa.
Tracey continued, "It's always been that tradition. I graduated from that same school and it was that tradition"
Another concern is Alyssa says she and others were notified of the change last week, which gives them little time to prepare for the tests.
"They give these kids a week notice that's just not fair," explained Tracey. "It's not right and it can literally jeopardize their entire future."
Alyssa added, "If they would have let us know in the beginning of the year that would have been more understandable because we would have had time to study."
Alberto Rodriguez, the chief administrative officer with the Lee County School District, confirmed that last year seniors who received an "A" were exempt from midterms. In a statement, a school official said "The current principal, Mr. Jeff Spiro, is mandating that every student, Seniors included, regardless of grades for the first two grading periods, will be expected to take a midterm exam.
"What might taking the midterms mean for your GPA?" asked Fox 4 reporter Gabrielle Sarann to Alyssa. "If i don't do well on them it would go down, which would hurt scholarships or acceptances to any other colleges i apply for," she said.
The principal, Mr. Spiro, says under his leadership these exams are critical. A way for teachers to monitor students progress in deciding whether a curriculum should be enhanced or retaught.