Grades app can be a real headache

November 14, 2012 

Years ago, when I was a child, if you misbehaved at school, a note got sent home. Sometimes it made it to the house, sometimes it didn’t -- or so I have heard. If you were really in trouble, the phone would ring at your house that evening, giving you the entire afternoon to come up with your story.

But kids nowadays don’t have that luxury. With mom carrying a cell phone and dad having e-mail, the parents know about the infraction sometimes minutes later -- and in the case of the new Houston County Infinite Campus, sometimes even before the kids do.

Taking the place of Smart Web, Infinite Campus, where parents can check on their kid’s grades and attendance has another feature. An app you can download allows notifications sent to your smart phone as soon as grades are posted.

If you have an honor roll student, this is probably just another way to brag to your friends and family. If you have a Scotty at your house, this is just another reason to purchase Advil in large quantities.

At least when the note came home from school, there was a child to vent at about their grades or in Scotty’s case, lack of grades. But with this new system, you can be anywhere when the notification appears on your phone.

“A new grade was posted to Scott’s Infinite Campus Account.” The next line includes the class, the assignment and the grade.

“A 54,” I said out loud involuntarily in the Publix checkout line the other morning. “How do you get a 54 on an open book test?”

The cashier and the lady behind me in line just shook their heads.

At least when I looked his grades up on the computer, I wasn’t caught off guard and had psychologically prepared myself for what as I was about to read. I also never checked his grades online unless Scotty was in the vicinity so I that after viewing his grades, I could a) take away his phone b) scream at him and c) consider that while I don’t drink, it might be a good time to start.

Scotty views high school as an eight-hour social activity and thinks that any knowledge his teachers want to share will eventually seep into his head through some sort of osmosis -- that is, if there is any room left after girls’ telephone numbers and information gathered from ESPN SportsCenter.

With the new notifications coming to my phone, my head seems to just never quit pounding.

“How could you possibly have 5 zeros in one day,” I said to him when he finally arrived home from school and football practice the other day. “Don’t you get some credit for at least showing up to class?”

You might be interested in knowing that according to my child, a large majority of Scotty’s teachers seem to have early onset dementia and have misplaced his work.

“This is your explanation,” I said to him in a voice that my neighbors could overhear. “Your teachers have all conspired together to lose your papers?”

“That’s right,” my child replied to me. “Can I have my phone back now?”

My advice to you is this: Buy stock in Advil. Scotty has 2½ years left in high school. The price is sure to skyrocket.

Contact Alline Kent at 396-2467 or allinekent@cox.net.

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