Cash for Grades


Sam Jezak

Senior Vincent Chen takes a $20 bill from math teacher Scott Green after performing well on a calculus test.

Arjun Kelkar, News Writer

In a shocking move that left parents and educators baffled, Head of Upper Campus Gabriel Lemmon announced a new incentive for students who achieve high grades and test scores: cold, hard cash. 

“We believe that students should be rewarded for their academic achievements,” Lemmon said. “By offering cash incentives, we hope to motivate students to strive for excellence and reach their full potential.”

The initiative employs a three-pronged approach: test scores, class grades, and final exam scores. To be eligible for a $100 reward, a student simply has to achieve a 90% score in any of these categories.  

As expected, the announcement of the incentive program has caused quite a stir among students. While some are excited at the prospect of earning cash for their hard work, others see it as a cheap ploy by the school to boost their test scores. 

“I don’t know how I feel about this,” junior Ethan Roh said. “It’s cool to get paid for getting good grades, but it feels like they’re trying to buy our success.” 

Junior Vishesh Ranganathan expressed concern over the potential for inflation. 

“If everyone in the school is suddenly getting all this extra money, won’t that drive up prices?” Ranganathan said. “I can see it already: The snack shack doubles its prices for gummy bears. Lunch costs $22 a day. The microwaves become pay-per-use. I’m worried about the economic implications.” 

Despite the initial skepticism, the results have been nothing short of astounding. According to statistics published on the school’s website, the program has led to a staggering increase in mean test scores and mean GPA. 

“We knew that the cash incentives would motivate our students, but we could never have imagined just how effective they would be,” Lemmon. “We are proud to say that our students are now performing at levels that are quite literally not possible.”

One high school student, who asked to remain anonymous for his own safety, has more than doubled his GPA to an astronomical 7.4 since the program’s inception. 

However, this sophomore’s stellar performance has now instilled fear in the administration that his success may drive the school into bankruptcy.

“While it’s great that he’s been so motivated by the new program, we weren’t expecting such a response when we budgeted for it,” Lemmon said. “We are looking into ways to compensate, but might have to increase tuition to stay afloat.” 

While the administration has more mixed feelings over the new policy, teachers are loving the ways the initiative is changing the classroom. 

“It’s like the students are teaching themselves,” chemistry teacher Sarah Prestwood said joyfully. “Even before the bell rings, they’re all in their seats reading the textbook for the lesson. It’s made my job way easier: I can just sit around and watch them while they learn about organic nomenclature or buffer solutions all day! They’ve even been asking for more tests in an attempt to qualify for the rewards.” 

As the saying goes, money talks. And, in this case, it seems to be saying, “Study harder.”