University Admins Say No to Pass/Fail Grading System

University administrators have rejected SGA's proposal to allow UNO students to be graded on an optional pass/fail basis due to the pandemic this semester.

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Veronika Lee, Editor in Chief

Last week SGA member Desmond C. LeBlanc shared SGA’s resolution proposing that UNO adopt an optional pass/fail system of grading due to circumstances surrounding the Coronavirus. This week LeBlanc reports to Driftwood that UNO administration has vetoed the resolution.

“To sum everything up, [President Nicklow’s] response was a simple no to implementing the system. He stated that after speaking with administration, faculty senate, and teachers, they ‘were nearly unanimous in their strong opposition to Pass/Fail.’ According to Dr. Nicklow, professors feel as though implementing the pass/fail system as an option ‘strongly diminishes the value of their work and the respect shown for them.’ Also, he mentioned the negative impacts that the pass/fail system would have on a student such as the P not being counted in the GPA but the F counting as a zero, which would count towards a student’s GPA.”

LeBlanc adds, “I appreciate everything that is being done for our students and look forward to working with the administration on continuing to improve our institution as we move through these unprecedented times.”

The resolution put forth last week stated that students who wanted to be graded traditionally would have the option to do so but those who felt uncertain of their ability to perform to their best could choose to be graded via the pass/fail system.

As of press time, universities across the United States are demanding that universities be taken to task for switching over to completely online curriculum as a result of the pandemic. Drexel University in Philadelphia and the University of Miami, have filed class action lawsuits via South Carolina’s Anastopoula Law Firm. Tuitions at both institutions are about $50,000 per year, on par with the tuitions of local institutions Tulane and Loyola, and students hope to be reimbursed. Students at New York University are gathering names for a petition to do the same. As states have already cut their budgets for federally funded institutions like UNO, the future of our own low cost tuition university is uncertain. If the price tag of private New Orleans schools like Tulane does not go down, will we see an increase in enrollment due to the relative affordability of our institution?

Photo by Matt Ragland on Unsplash