A new pilot program began in Tenafly’s middle school and high-school hopes to reduce stress and anxiety levels?for students and parents?by restricting access to the online grading system during school hours to encourage more offline discussions about grades and student performance.
Begun Jan. 27, the plan to restrict access to the district?s Genesis Grade Portal will be in force Monday to Friday 7:50 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., said District Superintendent Shauna DeMarco, to help students and parents to put less pressure on individual grades and look at grades in the overall context of student performance in a particular class.
?Our hope is that closing the portal during school hours will provide students and teachers the opportunity to review student performance together first, before parents get involved, as these conversations may provide important clarification and context. As always, we encourage parents to take an active interest in their child’s performance, and to access the portal as regularly as they feel is necessary?outside of school hours” said a Tenafly district email message announcing the program.
When one parent asked about the pilot effort?s genesis, DeMarco noted mental health was partly a concern but the major reason was she had heard positive news about similar efforts, including a recent Wall Street Journal article, which was appended to the email explaining the district?s rationale.
?I want to be very, very honest about this?This is not a reaction to anything, this is not a response to something that is a crisis,? said DeMarco, citing recent articles and academic reports pointing out benefits to limiting access to grade portals during school hours.
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