Palo Alto High School will now allow current seniors to choose whether they want to report their weighted grades given that close to 150 students would be disadvantaged by the practice, Superintendent Max McGee wrote in a summary for next week's board meeting. This is the latest modification to the school-board's decision about reporting weighted along with unweighted grade point averages for current high school seniors in the school district.
Gunn High School will report both unweighted and weighted GPAs on seniors' transcripts, as the board directed the high schools to do last week. Gunn counselors also will continue a practice of reporting the weighted average in a report section of the Common Application.
Paly pushed back on the board's decision after discovering that approximately 145 Paly seniors would have a lower grade point average using the weighted system.
While Paly uses the University of California/California State University weighting system, which doesn't count ninth-grade courses nor non-UC approved courses, Gunn uses its own methodology for calculating weighted GPA. Gunn seniors' weighted averages are either equal to or greater than their their unweighted, McGee said.
McGee told the Weekly Thursday that Paly has contacted all colleges and universities that seniors applied to for early decision to let them know the district is in the midst of changing its practice, and that applicants from Paly now have the option to report their weighted average.
As of Thursday afternoon, 38 out of 264 seniors who applied for early decision have requested that the school report their weighted GPAs, McGee said.
McGee will provide more information, including the difference between how Gunn and Paly calculate students' weighted GPA, during his "superintendent's report" portion of the board meeting on Tuesday evening. He will not discuss any long-term proposals, however "since we are still identifying the myriad questions, concerns, and unanticipated problems that various weighting systems must address," he wrote in his summary.
The district has also tentatively scheduled an online webinar on weighted grades for Tuesday, Nov. 28, 7-8:30 p.m. There will also be at least two board-meeting discussions to explore long-term solutions, McGee wrote.