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Marlborough School Student Newspaper
The Student News Site of Marlborough School

The UltraViolet

The Student News Site of Marlborough School

The UltraViolet

To kill a mocking-book
To kill a mocking-book
February 21, 2024

Policy changes enacted this year

Policy+changes+enacted+this+year

The introduction of a 30%-70% decaying average retake policy, a one-third grade deduction for each day late homework policy as well as “classroom mode”, has left some students with questions about these policies’ implications. As the school moves out of online learning, administrators are considering the balance between flexibility and the expectations of Marlborough. 

According to Interim Director of the Upper School Regina Rosi Mitchell, the policies are meant to help acclimate students to the expectations they will face in their adult life.  

“I see our responsibility as not just teaching students course content in class, but also work habits and how to function in the world that they’re going to be entering,” Rosi Mitchell said. “The reality is that in college, work, as well as life, there are deadlines, and if you don’t meet them, that will be a larger problem.”

Director of the Middle School Sean Fitts emphasized that the late work policies are meant to encourage students to respect the deadlines provided by teachers. 

“I think the flexibility is still there, but we wanted to have a hard line for students doing work whenever they felt like it,”  Fitts said. “It’s not the reality of life, and the goal is to get prepared for college, which is not going to be as flexible,” 

Another new concept that has been added this year is the term “classroom mode,” which is used to describe the transition between social time and time to focus on school work. 

“My definition of classroom mode would be that it’s the behaviors that students and teachers use to demonstrate that they’re ready for class.” Rosi Mitchell said. “That could be related to technology, as well as any materials or anything you might need to learn for the next 70 minutes.” 

In a technology focused world, distractions from devices, especially during class time, are increasing. 

“People have access to you 24/7 now, and you’re constantly bombarded by distraction,” Fitts said. “So the idea of getting into a classroom mode is getting into the frame of mind to learn, whatever that means for the class.” 

Despite positive intentions, these new changes have generated mixed feelings from the student body.  

“Although I am glad that the opportunity for retakes is still available, the frequent change in policies every year can be confusing and stressful,” Georgia ‘25 said.” I feel like there has been a lack of consistency.”

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Millie '25, Co-Features Editor
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