Grade Inflation - an art work by T Newfields I have a heap of papers
& only limited time.

How can I churn out grades
without making others whine?

Should I be lenient & pretend
effort alone counts –
or honest & acknowledge
when ignorance is pronounced?

I can't answer these questions
so will relax in front of the telly instead &
or better yet, seek the advice
of Johnny Walker & Jim Beam.

[1 hr. & a few shots of whisky later]

Okay – back to the business of grading!

[clearing throat while leaning on chair]

Well, this attempt at erudition looks like an "A"
& I guess this gibberish is a "B".

[shuffling around the papers randomly]

These poor constructions are at best mediocre –
doesn't that translate into a "C"?

[Gerping loudly while dealing with a particularly odious paper]

This piece of plagiarism deserves an "F"
& this document is so flaccid & lame
I cannot give it a passing grade.

[Pausing in reflection, then clearing throat]

Wait a minute!
If I grade too strictly
won't teacher evaluations fall?
Isn't it safer to give lots of "B"s
so criticisms can be stalled?

[swishing a glass of whiskey while gazing at the papers]

Even if the bulk of this trash is worthless
why not play it safe?
The less people bitch, the more I can focus
on getting rich: students adore high grades!

[the following day, when 100% sober]

. . . How often have I thought like this
& compromised my stand?

When will I confess my grading is flimsy
& integrity a rusty old can?

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