The C+

Imagine if you were doing your job then one day your boss handed you a sheet of paper saying you got a C+. There were no comments. All it said was that you got an average grade.

Luckily, that’s not how life works. You’re constantly giving and receiving feedback to prevent those C+ moments. Bosses let you know what areas you need to improve. You let others know where you need additional help and support. There’s no defined end point where you get a final grade. It’s a constant iterative process where both parties take ownership.

Yet, in our schools it’s completely different. It’s not very crazy to walk in one day and see a C+ on your report card. That’s quite normal for many students. They’re not sure where they went wrong or what they need to improve. All they know is that they aren’t good enough.

So what is the message we want to send? Is it, “you’re not good enough”? Or is it “here’s how we can collectively get better”?

And once we answer those questions, how do we design a system that continues to ask them in the right ways?