Should Students Get Paid for Getting Good Grades in School?

Many parents and even some schools believe the practice of offering financial rewards leads to better performance. What do you think?

In a 2009 article titled "Rewards for Students Under a Microscope", Times Health reporter Lisa Guernsey said that programs institued to pay students for good performance were under way in cities across the country. "In some places, Guernsey wrote, "students can bring home hundreds of dollars for, say, taking an Advanced Placement course and scoring well on the exam." While reporting equally on the downsides and piushback from some prents, administrators and psycologists, the article also cited many advantages of the programs and success stories from schools nationwide.

Further examining the issue, an article in TIME magazine published about one year later, said "the most damning criticism of Fryer came from psychologists like the University of Rochester's Edward Deci," who said, quite simply, that "What we really want is for people to value the activity of learning."

Whether institutionalized or implemented on as a family decision, the debate over monetary rewards for academic performance still continues today. So for this week's we'd like to ask our and other local parents what they think about the idea.

This Week's Question:

Do you think paying students for good grades is a good idea? What positive or negative reprocussions could you envision or have you seen with such practices? And, if not money, what other types of rewards can you offer your kids to incentivise them to excel in their academics?

Chris Bertrand June 01, 2011 at 04:11 PM
Though it seems to be a common practice, rewarding our kids for academic achievement with cash never came up on our radar.
John Stephens June 01, 2011 at 06:40 PM
Nor did it for my parents, ha!
Malcolm January 24, 2012 at 05:40 PM
It's a great idea. It should motivate students and parents alike. In my day if your grades dropped below a certain level negative things would happen. So we were motivated by fear. I think the more positive approach is better and generates some competition among students. That's the way it is in the 'real world'.


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