Updated: Tuesday, 08 May 2012, 7:58 AM MDT
Published : Monday, 07 May 2012, 10:10 PM MDT
ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - A computer glitch at a New Mexico school district has sent school officials scrambling, trying to correct a batch of incorrect G.P.A’s that graduating seniors have been sending to colleges, universities, and scholarship programs.
Kierra Schauer, a senior at Socorro High School, had been wondering why she was struggling to get accepted at the University of New Mexico.
“They kept asking for new transcripts with my grades, and I was sending that so I didn’t know what was wrong,” Schauer told News 13.
The G.P.A. listed on her sealed, official transcript showed an “overall” G.P.A. of 2.6. Another G.P.A. of 1.9 reflected how she performed in core subjects.
The numbers were not high enough to impress the admissions office at UNM.
Citing reviews of her official transcript, admissions officials kept sending her letters, saying they were “deferring a decision to a later date”.
Kierra and her family didn’t even know what her official G.P.A. was, until her sister decided to open up the sealed envelope and see for herself.
“It didn’t look right, ‘cause she had good grades but it didn’t show that,” said Felica Sergeant, Kierra’s sister. “So I did the math and it was way off.”
According to Felicia’s math, Kierra’s “overall” G.P.A. should have been a 2.9, not 2.6. The G.P.A. for her core subjects should have been a 2.5, not a 1.9.
Kierra’s mom took the family’s numbers to Socorro school officials.
“When you do all the adding and the math it doesn’t equal to what was on the paper, and I wanted to know why,” said Vanessa Jones, Kierra’s mother.
After meeting with Jones, Dr. Vannetta Perry, Socorro’s interim superintendent, quickly discovered Kierra and her family were right.
Dr. Perry blames a computer glitch.
“During the summer last year the district changed a configuration in the software to meet requirements of the public education department on reporting grades,” Dr. Perry said.
But the software failed to recognize grades with “pluses (+)” and “minuses (-)”, affecting virtually every student’s cumulative grade-point-averages, including of course Socorro High School’s 113 graduating seniors.
Dr. Perry admits it’s been a frustrating ordeal.
School officials are now in the process of meeting with graduating seniors to make sure they’re aware of the problem, and to find out what colleges they’ve applied to.
“We will do anything that we need to do, anything possible to correct the situation for students,” Dr. Perry said.
For Kierra’s family, the problems go beyond just getting into college.
“My daughter had to apply for scholarships. Some of them, the deadline was for December. And the others, the deadline was February. They went out with her wrong G.P.A.,” Jones said.
The district is now sending out letters to explain what happened, and new transcripts with the correct G.P.A’s, Dr. Perry said.
“I hope that scholarship donors and universities will be aware that we are very concerned about this, and will do their best to make sure that our students receive what they deserve,” Dr. Perry said.
Despite the problem, Kierra was able to make it into UNM, but she has yet to hear back regarding any scholarships.
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