SBDM Committee Ranking Decision

Quick background 

A few years ago, SEM parents successfully voted to select Option 2 (No Ranking). It’s time to vote again. This year, I established a ranking committee on November 13, 2019. The ranking committee reviewed the criteria established in board policy EIC(LOCAL) and addressed the pros and cons of continuing our Option 2 (No Rank). On December 5, 2019, the ranking committee formally request to select Option 2 (No Rank) again. 

Parents, now it’s up to you to vote and decide.

Per policy, I must share a presentation of the SBDM’s Committee’s findings (to select No Rank) with parents of all students currently enrolled at SEM. That meeting will be held on Monday, December 9, 2019, room 211, 8:00 a.m. – this is not a mandatory meeting. A summary of that meeting is below.

It is extremely important that starting on Monday, January 13, 2019, at least 60% of our parents vote WITH at least 60% or higher of the percentage of votes in favor of Option 2. If either of these percentages are below 60%, then the recommendation fails and SEM will default to RANKING.

Be thinking about: Do I want Option 2 (No Rank) or Option 1 (Rank) for my child? There is no action needed on your behalf right now.


Mr. Palacios

Summary of Principal’s Presentation

Ranking Committee’s has recently made their decision on whether or not to rank SEM students! 

Decision: option 2 (NO RANK) 

The Committee agrees that not ranking our students is the right decision because:

  • Students rated with number grades can lose interest in what they’re learning compared with students who aren’t graded at all.
  • As of 2016, less than half of U.S. high schools have class rank systems. Most universities are no longer considering class rank and taking a more holistic approach to admissions.
  • Class rank only demonstrates a student relative to his classmates and not the rigor of the course load.
  • The importance of student ranking for college admission has lessened considerably with the rising trend of evaluating students holistically.
  • Class rank only compares a student to other students at one school; therefore, ranking is a very narrow method of evaluation. In addition, a student who attends SEM would rank very high at their home school, but might rank in the middle of their class here. In this case, ranking would be harmful to the student. 
  • Fosters a collaborative environment among students rather than competitive
  • Causes students to focus on their own growth rather than their comparison to their peers
  • Because some scholarships are based on class rank, many of our exceptional students will not be eligible to receive scholarships if we ranked our students.
  • Many of our graduating students would have a difficult time being accepted to Texas state schools if they are ranked low in their graduating class, but would be ranked in the top 10% at their home schools and therefore would be guaranteed admission. 
  • In a school as rigorous as ours, we must consider the effects that class ranking has on our student body. Class ranking will foment the kind of toxic competition that will deter collaboration and collegiality amongst our students. In the working world, students must learn to work collaboratively with their peers especially in STEM fields.