The Third Quarter Grades Are In.

The third quarter grades are in.

If left, essentially, to his own devices, these are the grades Dylan gets.

Dylan has an A in P.E. He got 100% on absolutely everything. Dylan loves P.E. and needs constant movement, so this makes sense.

His other six classes are loaded with classwork grades of 90-100%. In all of his classes, he was capable of getting A’s. He has the potential to get A’s.

But he didn’t do that. For one thing, he chose to ignore his homework. In Spanish, he has an A – except that he is missing seven homework assignments. Even though homework only counts for 10% of his grade, the missing assignments brought down his grade to a B.

He had the exact same experience in Computer Science. His classwork and projects grades averaged 94.4%. But he was missing two assignments. So he got a B in Computer Science.

He eeked out a very low B (80%) in English. His English teacher gave him every opportunity to do the work – and turn it in late, which Dylan did with nearly every assignment, including written assignments that were supposed to be done in class. Still, Dylan is missing one assignment completely. That, coupled with low grades on “reading checks” got him an 80% – barely a B.

In Biology, his teacher (surprise!) wouldn’t accept two assignments that she’d asked for repeatedly that he finally turned in – on the last day of the quarter. So Dylan got his first C this quarter.

It’s not his only C, though. In History, Dylan had five missing assignments, and he didn’t study for quizzes or tests. His grades reflect that – and he got another C in History.

Perhaps the saddest grade is from Geometry. Dylan now has a Geometry teacher he adores, and he expected to get an A in the class. And he got almost exclusively A’s during the quarter. Then, right before the quarter ended, he got a C on a quiz, and then failed a test, bringing his overall grade down to a B.

He was busy scrambling to catch up in his other classes, and just didn’t take the time to keep up with Geometry.

In fact, the absolute worst thing about the entire third quarter was watching Dylan helplessly during the last two weeks. He was desperately trying to dig himself out from under the pile of rubble that he created, but the pile was just too huge. He ignored his work for so long; there was no way to do it all.

So he has one A, two C’s and four B’s.

A lot of parents would be thrilled with these grades for an unmedicated child with ADHD. And maybe I should be thrilled.

But I want Dylan to have his choice of colleges. I want him to get in everywhere he wants to go, even if that’s an unrealistic goal. I want him to be able to choose his future. I want him to enjoy – not just college but his work, and his life.

And no matter what job he has, even if he is somehow catapulted to super-stardom, Dylan is going to have responsibility. He’s going to have to show up on time. He’s going to have to meet deadlines. He’s going to have to turn in his work on time, whatever his work may be.

And he just hasn’t learned how to do that yet.

I don’t care about the grades. I care about his future.

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