Most high schoolers must have already been told by their seniors that quarter grades do not hold as much weight as the semester and final grades. But that’s not the whole point of it. Failed classes usually mean a lower GPA, which might eventually affect your chances of landing a good college.
Failure is as much a part of your high school life as a success. It is normal, and it is also okay if you sometimes fail. But failures could also mean an opportunity to do better for yourself.
So, what happens if you fail a quarter? How does the quarter system work? And will I not get into college if I fail this quarter?
This blog will tell you everything you need to know about failing a high school quarter while resolving related queries.
What are quarter grades, and do they matter to college?
Before we start discussing whether the quarter grades can impact your college admission, it will be beneficial for us to understand what quarter grade means. American schools break up their academic years into different lengths of time. And depending upon that length, some schools have the two terms “semester” system, some have three terms “trimester” system, and a few others have the four-term “quarter” system.
So, what is a quarter system? A quarter system divides an academic year into two major semester systems, further divided into two quarters. So there are four sessions fall, winter, spring, and summer. Each session in a quarter system can last up to 10 weeks, and students can take up to three to four classes based on the credits awarded for each class.
The first semester usually starts in late August and ends in January, and the second semester continues right after and ends in May. The grades that come after the end of the first quarter become your first set of quarter grades. And the grades that come out at the end of the semester are the semester grades, which are more important than the quarter grades.
If you are a senior, the college admission officials wouldn’t even heed your quarter grades. But they will mandatorily ask you for your semester grades because many colleges ask for a “mid-year report” from your high school counselor.
But, if you are applying for colleges on “Early Action” or “Early Decision”, your quarter grades will matter greatly because they will become the only point of reference for the college officials to give their final verdict on your admission.
What happens if you fail a quarter in high school?
For starters, failure is no measure of your talent. Sometimes people fail because of difficult circumstances, and for some, failures can also mean a new starting point. Therefore, if you fail one quarter and pass the other quarter in a semester, then you can take a retest of the quarter that you have failed.
As for college application, if you are not planning to apply to colleges on “Early Action”, then your “final grades” will take the lead, and you wouldn’t need to worry about your “quarter grade”. You can make up for the failing grade in one quarter by performing well in the other three quarters to gain an acceptable “final grade”.
But, if that’s not the case for you, then you are in big trouble because your “quarter grade” will affect your “Early Action” admission to college.
I am failing a quarter. Will I have to repeat this grade?
Most of the schools in the US usually rely on the average grade of all four quarters to determine whether the students pass the grade or not. Therefore, if your overall grade exceeds the minimum required grade threshold and you have acquired the required number of compulsory credits and optional credits, you will not need to repeat a grade.
At the same time, the rules can differ from subject to subject, as the school and the state education department have different policies for major and minor subjects. For example, the rules might be different for failing a gym class as compared to failing a math class.
What grades do you need to pass high school?
The grading system varies across different regions of the US. For instance, in Arizona, students must pass 22 credits with a minimum grade of D or a score of 60%. In New York, students need 44 credit points on the said subjects plus a minimum score of 65 in the five major exams to earn a regent high school diploma.
All said and done; high school is a time when everyone goes through many life-changing events. You might fail your class due to several reasons. But it always helps to root out the cause of your problem and address your pain point as soon as possible. Speak to your teachers, parents, and friends, seek help if you need it, and take things easy on yourself. The only skill you need to ace in high school is your skill of maintaining a perfect balance between life and studies. And once you land that formula, everything else will work on its own.
Sananda Bhattacharya, Chief Editor of TheHighSchooler, is dedicated to enhancing operations and growth. With degrees in Literature and Asian Studies from Presidency University, Kolkata, she leverages her educational and innovative background to shape TheHighSchooler into a pivotal resource hub. Providing valuable insights, practical activities, and guidance on school life, graduation, scholarships, and more, Sananda’s leadership enriches the journey of high school students.
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