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Leadership’s Future: Inflation

by Miki Saxon

My niece and her husband are both teachers; several other friends also teach.

They teach at various grade levels from kindergarten through advanced high school courses.

One complaint they all voice is the pressure from parents and students to give better grades.

Not to be better teachers, offer more relevant material or strengthen students’ skills, but to give better grades.

It’s called “grade inflation” and it is rampant across the country at all levels of education.

Andrew Perrin, a sociologist at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. “An A should mean outstanding work; it should not be the default grade,” Mr. Perrin said. “If everyone gets an A for adequate completion of tasks, it cripples our ability to recognize exemplary scholarship.”

Business was the culprit a decade ago when title inflation was rampant during the dot com boom; now it is grade inflation.

Everybody knows inflation is bad—but are you aware that it devalues people in the same way it devalues money?

Think about that before you pressure a teacher or hand out a title instead of a raise.


Leadership’s Future started several years ago with guest posts from a college professor when I was writing Leadership Turn; after he left I continued from my own viewpoint.

After Leadership Turn was shut down I moved the feature to MAPping Company Success. In a broad way, Leadership’s Future focused on the Millennials and the following generation in terms of the kinds of people our society had and is producing.

There may be occasional posts on the topic in the future, but not a regular feature.

Join me tomorrow for an overview of the changes coming to MAPping Company Success in 2011.

Flickr image credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/skyenicolas/4056810694/

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