No zero policy


I really need to share this post with you: it’s about an educator’s policy for submitting assignments which doesn’t accept ‘zeroes’ – non-submissions. The students are taught that it’s better to submit just a blank page with their name on it – at least this will give the teacher a chance to see that they need help. Imperfect assignments are ok; multiple submissions and regrading are expected. As a result, the students are not afraid to make the first step because they can ‘fail forward’, and the teacher will give them constructive feedback. ¬†Sounds great, doesn’t it? The only qualm I have about it is the name of the policy: ‘Once a zero, always a zero’. No wonder it gets some criticism from adult stakeholders (by the author’s own admission), at least until they understand what it really means!

So, I wouldn’t mind trying out a rule like this in my writing classes – but we need to think of another name for it, right?


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