Letters to the Editor

Letters from readers

Regarding your consensus opinion last week, I think we should set up a petition against these last-minute budget adjustment that scavenge on the financial remains of students at Tech.

What is being done by the SGA to protect our financial interests here? How are these funds being used?

There is nothing in these fees that warrant the name “Temporary” and “Academic Excellence Fees”. Its only purpose is to hide the fact that the Tech administration is unable to prepare balanced budget.

In crisis time, we need to shift our focus to core values and get rid of what is unnecessary. How many people are working in the “Parking and Transportation” agency at Tech? How many of them are loitering around campus to ambush, prey and scavenge upon the financial remains of students? I do not think these people bring any value to our diploma. I do not think they are making our campus any safer.

In addition, the “Parking and Transportation” agency is running a funny business. The transportation fees that are mandatory even for those who do not need them are constantly increasing. When fuel went down by 60%, our transportation fees increased by over 10%. What is the logic here?

Alex Sevy

Grad AE

How many times throughout college have you heard the sentence, “Oh well, thank goodness he curves!” Should we really appreciate it when a teacher curves? Or should we all stop and think about what we really gain? Professors justify curving grades based on the idea that each class should have around the same percentages of As,Bs,Cs, Ds, and Fs.

This bases one’s final grade, not on what one knows or don’t know, but on how many of their classmates know or don’t know it. If an excellent Calculus student exempts Calculus I to take Calculus II, does he deserve a lower grade because his class contains all the students who also exempted Calculus I? Should he wait to take it with kids who couldn’t exempt it in order to get a better grade?

Curving discourages the overall learning of the entire class. If a student knows that his grade depends on the performance of his peers, will he want to help or discourage his classmates from understand the material? This causes the standard of learning and knowledge to decrease for everyone. Most importantly, say a student takes a physics test and gets a thirty on it, but then the professor curves it to make a thirty a passing grade: the fact has not changed that that student still only knows how to do thirty percent of the material….it only changes the appearance.

Curving grades makes classes appear like students have learned the material for the benefit of the professor, at the expense of the student’s education. And by extension, the expense of anybody concerned with the knowledge of the students who will one day run the future.

What would happen if tomorrow professors at Georgia Tech could no longer curve grades? Would professors end up failing entire classes? No, because then they would go on academic probation and lose their jobs. Instead, professors would be forced to teach their students and make sure that their students understand how to do chemistry, statistics, calculus, thermodynamics, etc. If teachers cannot capably teach their material to a level students can master, then the school should replace them with someone who can, but the school should not allow a curve to hide behind.

Kate Bowen

Fifth-year CE

While I will not argue that affordable available Health coverage is a noble goal, I ask you at what price does the pursuit of this goal come? It appears to me the costs are our freedoms, an immoral redistribution of wealth, and a massive government expansion which will only lead to more oppression and less freedom.

While I agree that you are supposed to support the majority of your constituents, you must realize there is a real need to protect from tyranny of the majority.

The healthcare bill costs $1.2 trillion that has to come from somewhere and half of it admittedly is going to be from taxes on the wealthy, who already pay a disproportionate amount of taxes to fund other massive entitlement programs.

I am a student at Georgia Tech, and I would love to hear a response defending your vote.

Josh Blade

Fourth-year CS