A school grade is just a number

Jawaher Zahran

I ALWAYS thought that school grades were important until I realized that most people who succeed in life did not necessarily get excellent grades.

A school grade for an exam is just a number, a meaningless value. A good grade shows how well you grasped the exam questions from the way you answered and helps you pass onto the next level.

A bad grade, however, does not determine anyone’s future. Just because you got an “F” on an exam does not mean your future is collapsing. You still have a bright future ahead of you. You still have a long career path ahead of you.

Parents may be hard on their kids and kids may get upset when they get a terrible mark. I highly urge parents not to be so hard on their children. Let them get what they get. It’s their grade.

After many years and after their son or daughter has progressed in life, do parents really care about a mark they got in the 10th grade? I bet that they do not. That is why grades are just numbers. Height is a number, weight is a number and age is a number, too. And numbers are nothing but figures on a piece of paper. 95 or 96? What’s the significance really?

School success is different from life success. It’s crucial to differentiate between the two. Albert Einstein did poorly in school and got an F, but many find that hard to believe. Why? Because he became a renowned scientist. Basketball players, actors, singers and many others have performed minimally in school.

If you are studying now, then why should you cry over a grade that won’t matter in the distant future? If you ever felt like crying over a grade, think deeply about this question. Who will actually see your school certificate? Do you know? The answer is: No one else but maybe your parents, you and your teachers who already know what you did in the first place. Now that I am older, I realize that I wasted my sadness on some of my grades.

In my opinion, a bad grade should not shake anyone’s self-esteem. It’s true that people like to see themselves succeeding and they like to see it expressed in numbers. But grading is, I believe, a complicated process. Often, grades do not determine how well you understand a lesson. They only determine how well you answer on an exam paper.

A grade is just a number. It does not determine your self-worth.

Jawaher Zahran,