There are three types of students; A students, B students and C students.
When they leave school, B students get jobs working for the government, and A students wind up working for C students.
That quote sums up a course I took several years ago that was aimed at people interested in starting their own businesses.
It may seem totally off the wall, and obviously there are more than three types of students, but as gross generalisations go I think it’s pretty good… and it does make a valid point.
I don’t remember the name of the book it came from and I’m not going to bother looking that up even if the rules of good journalism say that is what I should do… and the reason I don’t mind bending those rules is because they are not my rules and that’s what the quote is all about.
The tools needed to be successful in business and in life are not always reflected by the grades students get in school.
Along with book-based knowledge it is also essential to learn how to think for yourself so you can make your own set of rules.
High grades can sometimes just be an indication of how well students can memorise information, follow instructions, and do what they have been asked to do.
That may well make them very attractive to many employers, but it doesn’t necessarily make for creative independent thinkers.
It needs to be stated here that it is also very possible for A students to be both good at following instructions and at independent thought.
It is also possible for B students to think for themselves and to want more out of life than a government job.
C Students, meanwhile, could just be less capable than ones who achieve higher grades, or they could simply be the kind of people who don’t like to follow other people’s rules.
That certainly doesn’t make them ideal employees for companies that are looking for workers who will always do as they are told, but it doesn’t necessarily make them less intelligent than A and B students.
And the ones who are independent thinkers are far more likely to see opportunities and ways to improve existing systems, which makes them candidates to become successful entrepreneurs.
I’m throwing this rather odd view of our student grading system out there for you to consider because I believe there is far too much emphasis placed on achieving high marks in school.
There is also far too much pressure placed on students by teachers, by parents and by themselves to be at the top of the class so they will be a success at some future date.
There are many ways to measure success and I think students who have managed to navigate their way through our system into higher education are entitled to see themselves as successful right now.
If more students could manage to do that it might make it easier for them to relax, stop worrying about grades and concentrate on acquiring the knowledge they need to get what they want out of life… even if it’s just a cushy government job.