To keep Greencastle High School students competitive in college applications and scholarships, the school will begin an incremental move toward weighted grades beginning this fall.
The Greencastle School Board accepted a weighted grades proposal this week that will boost the GPA for a successfully completed Advanced Placement course by 1.0. This means an "A" in an AP course would earn a 5.0 instead of a 4.0 on the grading scale. A "B" will become a 4.0 instead of a 3.0, and so on.
"Weighted grades help our students with college admission, but the also help them with scholarships," Superintendent Dr. Lori Richmond said.
While the change will help GHS students in the application process, they will not have an immediate impact on class ranks. For the classes of 2013 and 2014, the weighted GPA will be used for applications, but the unweighted GPA will be used for class rank.
Any members of these classes who have completed AP courses already will have the new GPAs applied retroactively.
Full implementation will begin for the class of 2015, the class currently completing its freshman year. Because these students have not taken AP courses yet, there will be no unfair advantage in terms of class ranking to immediate implementation.
One impetus behind the weighted scale is a change to the application process for some colleges and university. At Indiana University, for example, students who meet specific criteria with regards to GPA and board scores automatically qualify for specified amounts of financial aid.