Solving School Problems Using Incentives

10 02 2011

Problem to Solve

Student Lates

In the comments, add your incentive solutions.  Be sure to indicate what type of incentive are suggesting (economic, social, normal) and  whether this it is positive or negative.

You can suggest an incentive and/or offer a polite and respective critique of someone else’s suggestion.

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35 responses

10 02 2011
Dani

As lates are inevitably a problem no matter where you go, positive incentive for those that are on time should be instilled. The current consequence for being late at Mac has not been effective, and has just cause more problems for those who are not late. Although being on time is an expectation in the country we live in, High schools should make a reason why students should want to come to school on time. I think that each teacher should have there own method of rewarding their students, as each department is different. Bonus questions on tests or quizzes, or even even extensions on assignments should be rewarded to those who have good attendance. If harsher incentives such as staying after school or any form of detention, students will do their part to get out of them at any possible cost.

10 02 2011
Alexei Goudzenko

I agree. The problem is that noone enjoys school and no student looks forward to it which is part of this late issue. Meaning a positive incentive is the way to go, not an incentive that would make it worse for students.

I like the idea of the social positive incentive by giving away marks or extending deadlines because the reality is marks are everything for students, they could care less about being late.

10 02 2011
dmitritk

I disagree with the fact that you say positive incentives should be given to those who arrive on time. Being on time isn’t something you do for others, its something you do for yourself; you shouldn’t be rewarded for that. It is already expected of you to be on time. But I feel like negative incentives should be given to people to make them have a reason to arrive on time. Every incentive should be different for every problem, but I feel rewarding those who do the expected is wrong. Obviously teachers could mark easier for students who arrive on time all the time and follow expectations but that’s about it. As for the students who arrive late, in my opinion there should be a % of your mark dedicated to lates and absences. For example, 15 % of your total grade is affected by your lates. So out of 80 classes you were late 3 times , then you get 96 % in that area. People wouldn’t be wanting to lose that big of a chunk so they will try to make it on time. This is using a negative economic incentive for some while it could be a positive incentive for others.

10 02 2011
Carolyne Wang

I agree with you that positive incentives should not be used. But deducting marks, especially such a large percentage, for being late is a little extreme, because your mark is supposed to reflect your aptitude and the effort you put into learning, not necessarily your attendance record. 😛

10 02 2011
Alex Yesikov

I do not think that positive incentive will be effective in getting Mackenzie students to come one time. People should not be rewarded for something as basic as showing up to class on time. The school should start using economic incentive to get student to show up on time. I am not saying that the school should charge the student a fee every time he is late, a better idea would be after the student has accumulated a certain amount of lates then he should pay the fee. This is a positive and a negative incentive also depending on who you are the student or the school.

10 02 2011
cathytran

I like the idea of an economic incentive to get students to get students to class on time. I think that putting a fine on having a certain number of lates would definitely stop people from arriving late to class all the time.

But I’m not sure if I agree with you when you say that students shouldn’t be rewarded for something as basic as being on time for class. Rewarding students can be a way of discouraging late classroom arrival. Everyone likes rewards, and rewarding students for coming to school on time can definitely help them get them into the habit of arriving to school earlier. But now that I think about it, students may forget the main reason for being on time for class – it’s respectful to the teacher, and you don’t miss any of the lesson – and arrive on time solely for the purpose of being rewarded. When they leave a system that rewarded them for being early and go off to post-secondary, they may be unwilling to get to these classes on time just because they aren’t being awarded anymore. I think that whether or not they stay in the habit of being on time upon leaving this rewards system might just depend on the student, since everyone’s different.

10 02 2011
cathytran

Sorry for the grammatical errors!

10 02 2011
Susan Cui

My solution for solving student lateness in school is to use positive incentives. I believe if the school is able to reward everyone who is early or on time (using either social or economic incentives), then the students will be motivated in getting to class on time instead of hanging around in the hallway or sleeping at home. A good example can be giving the first 500 students who are on time for school a bonus mark in their first period class or some how use a points system and reward the several students who have the most “early arrival points” at the end of the year with either a big prize, special recognition in school, or some other bonus that will enhance their University application.

10 02 2011
Nahee Kim

I think it is better to use positive incentives in order for students to be encouraged to come to school. The method which school should use is giving them a reward of some kind for thoes who arrives on time. For example, giving them a marks for being on time, or have bonus quiz in the morning. In that way, students will come earlier to get that marks. Also, like Alexei said on the previous comment, students care about the marks, so if school starts to give bonus mark for thoes who come to school on time, the others who arrive late will come to school earlier just to get that bonus mark. This idea of incentive definately a positive and is good idea becuase if they are on time, they get reward by getting marks and get satisfaction.

10 02 2011
jwang909

I am of the mind that if people don’t care to come to school on time, then that extra 10-odd minutes is more valuable to them than being on time. However, I don’t think that adding a positive incentive will work because the majority of the students don’t care about the majority of the awards or prizes that people can be given for attending school on time, we already have it, called the Perfect Attendance award, and guess what? No-one cares about it. Furthermore, it is unreasonably more difficult to award the punctual students rather than punish the tardy students due to sheer number. While the number of lates is rather high, they are still a minority compared to the student body.

So that leaves us with a negative incentive. We should make the extra 10 minutes less valuable to them so that they will opt to come to school on time. My idea is that we fine the late students 4 dollars per day they are late, payable to the office at whatever time. However, at the end of the year, those with more than 7 lates will not get their report card until their debt is paid. To those students who still refuse to pay by the end of the year, I propose we refuse to mail that student’s highschool transcript, whenever it may be required (before transferring schools or applying to university). This ensures students will suffer the penalties and at 4 dollars per late, habitually late students will find that to be a substantial amount. 4 dollars is also a large enough amount that students who are only late once in a while, will still re-double their efforts to arrive to school on time.

I still think that lateness should be at the discretion of the teacher and how much it matters to that teacher. There are many teachers who excuse lateness and those who don’t. The ones who don’t should just simply input their own system, such as grade penalties or pop quizzes. I also feel that the school needs to get its priorities in order. The primary goal of cracking down on lates is to facilitate learning. However, they seem to also be adamant on having us stand through the announcements. That time we are standing there listening to announcements that may or may not even affect us can be used to rush to class. A little window of opportunity won’t hurt any learning and would greatly help students get to class on time.

10 02 2011
Chris Li

Applying positive economic/social incentives to the lateness policy is useless. This is because the people who are consistently late are not the ones being punished. Therefore, even if we do reward those who come on time or earlier, the ones who come late have essentially nothing to lose compared to when the incentive is not implemented.

I believe a good solution would be using a negative social incentive. I propose that we choose random days. On those days, students who have more than a certain number of lates in the past month will not be allowed into class, even if it is an important lab, test, etc. That way, if we assume students care about their marks, the only ones suffering are the students that are consistently late as they will be missing the important material taught in class. Since everything is random, students will not know whether it is safe to be late on any certain day. They will also have no reason to complain about missed material since they were given chances and chose to waste them.

10 02 2011
Steven Iarusci

The majority of people in the school aren’t actually late, like John said. The late students are a minority. Thusly, you can’t give a positive incentive to those who come early. So logically, you give a negative incentive whenever someone is late. The problem there is, if the cost is too high, some students would just skip first period entirely when they expect themselves to be late. So the question is, is there any kind of negative incentive that would work? I honestly can’t think of any, besides something that the teacher decides for themselves. To promote non-lates in all classes, every teacher would have to dole out some form of negative incentive, be it marks off an assignment, a quiz exclusive to the non-late people that’s so easy it’s basically free marks, or singing a song to the class.
Another way to do it is to set a portion of marks aside for each class, about 5-10% of the final grade, based on attendance & punctuality. Every time a student is absent or late without a proper reason, they get one of those marks off. The problem is if the student is late more than the amount of marks that can be taken away, what do you do then? Maybe take a couple marks off an assignment, or assign an earlier due date compared to the rest of the class on an assignment.
Or you could have them dance a jig. That’d work.

10 02 2011
Dylan Huber

I believe that a negative economic incentive is the solution. Charging people for being late is impossible as for some it is not even required for them to even attend school. Furthermore, it is unethical to pay students to attend school. It is my belief that there should be an overall attendance grade. The higher the grade, the more less the impact the grade has on the student’s overall average. The lower the overall attendance grade, the higher the impact and thus lowering the student’s average.

10 02 2011
David

I believe that some form of a negative social or economic incentive should be enforced on latecomers at Mackenzie, as the current late policy is rather ineffective; numerous students still decide to show up late to class and announcements regarding the amount of late students keep occurring. Negative social incentives such as detentions and suspensions should be possible consequences of truant behavior which is also outlined in our agendas under the school truancy policy. This policy details the progressive consequences for habitual lateness, and from my four years at Mackenzie, I have never seen this policy exercised. The faculty here at this school should start suspending students, handing out detentions, removing students from their extra-curricular activities or implementing similar consequences if they haven’t started doing so already. What makes this more effective than the current late policy is that a heavier price is attached to these kinds of consequences which may possibly make the student realize the seriousness of their truant behavior and cause them to adjust their schedules to get themselves to school on time on a regular basis.

10 02 2011
Alejandro Enamorado

When combating the problem of lateness in our school, I have to agree with Steven and others. There should be a negative economic incentive for those arriving late to school. Around 10-15% of the final grade in the course should be devoted to participation as well as attendance. This would get students to aim to arrive on time because it is basically free marks, such a portion of a grade can define ones overall average.
It is intervention due to a large number of lates. It is in place but it is never fully enforced. I do recommend that teachers as well as the administration enforce the guidelines already set out. There is another approach, one more extreme; however I do not feel it to be necessary at this point. What I am proposing is a maximum number of lates. Already this sounds like a turn off. In the policy, there will be a maximum number of lates set out and if ever reached or surpassed (by the administrations’ and teachers’ discretion) the student can face the possibility of receiving a penalty much larger than losing the 10-15% already mentioned above but potentially failing a course. It is a measure that should not be taken but be shown as an ominous threat. It is a fear tactic which should, in theory, work. Because maybe school isn’t the most desirable place for some, but this will send a signal that they do need to be at least on time most of the time in order to pass.

10 02 2011
kiruban1

This isn’t something new for those who have taken Commtech first period. Mr.Stitt actually implements work habits and punctuality into the final grade. I had to deal with that and it has made me come to school on time before this new “late policy” has started. I agree that it would make a huge impact if each course had a portion of their grade alloted for being on time.

10 02 2011
kiruban1

Being punctual is vital in the workforce and at school. I think having an negative social incentive is the best choice. The sole purpose of students coming to school is to learn. Does it make sense for students arriving late to do work and miss valuable class time? I believe that students should be punished in a different manner. Perhaps they could do work after school. This way, they can truly acknowledge their wrong doing. The only problem with this, though, is tracking the students that have arrived late.

10 02 2011
Linda Lei

I think that we have to consider reasons of being late. Why some students think it’s more important to sleep extra 10 minutes or walk slowly in the hallway instead of coming to class on time. Maybe because the first period isn’t that interesting to them and it’s no need to come to school early. I suggest the school to provide economic and social incentives to teachers whose teaching styles are more attracted to students, example, offer bonus to teachers who have no late students in their first period and school can also give teachers trophy for having no lateness in their class in the meeting and give privileges to these teachers, such as they don’t need to supervise class if the other teacher is absent.

10 02 2011
Joey Keum

In my opinion, there are multiple SUGGESTIONS in order to reduce the amount of “lates” Mackenzie is experiencing. One suggestion may be to allow students to walk to class during the announcements. However, they would still be consisted “late”, this method can help the students not disrupt their teachers and fellow classmate. If this suggestion were to be implemented, then more students would get to class before the lesson was taught. This would benefit the teachers (does not have to re-explain or re-teach) and their fellow classmate (disrupting their learning). With this method, you might be technically “late”, just without any negative feedbacks to the person and to everyone around that person. Another method in order to reduce the amount of lates would be to implement a negative economic incentive. Teachers can make a section in the students grades where attendance and commitment to the class would get you a better grade. So perhaps around 5% of the student’s final grade. These are just suggestions that i believe that may reduce the amount of lates within Mackenzie.

10 02 2011
Joey Keum

i forgot edit.. please mind my spelling…

10 02 2011
Linda Lei

I believe that it should be positive incentives to use in order to solve the lateness in school because school will give out money to teachers and reward them with trophy whose class have no lateness.

10 02 2011
Heshani Makalande

The number of late comers is increasing daily. Yet, there are students who are late once in awhile due to various circumstances, and it is not fair to take off marks just because the student is late once or twice. Students who come late to school should be given mandatory work in order to prevent their habit of being late to school daily. The school should monitor the students who are consistently late to school and give them detention, suspensions from all extra curricular activities etc, which is a negative incentive. I believe students will make an effort to come on time, due to the continuous detention. The system Mackenzie is following is unsuccessful, because it hasn’t cut down the number of late comers.

10 02 2011
Peter S

In my opinion students who come late are divided into two major groups. The first one is those who are constantly late and the second one is those who are rarely late( couple times a month because of unexpected circumstances). However I think there should be a mark that is given for being on time. It should be equal to 10% and it would be counted during the whole year.In the end of the second semester students can divide up their “punctuality mark” and add some percentage to the final mark of their courses. So that students would have positive economic incentive because they can gain something out from coming on time.

10 02 2011
nyaklha

In my Opinion rewarding students who are on time for class is useless and will not work as a positive intensive, firstly students are expected to be in class on time, being on time for class is not something to be rewarded. Also the idea of basically giving free marks for those who are on time for class is a good idea but at the end of the day students should be motivated to come to school and learn rather than come to school to get rewards.
Being late is caused by many different factors such as unreliable public transit, weather (mostly during winter), just factors that you cannot change.
I think to change the tardiness of students, the school should be motivated to reach out to the students and help them to want to learn rather than to just come to school for rewards rather than to learn.

10 02 2011
mscuttle

Some great ideas – keep in mind that they have to be feasible. Do you think the school would be permitted to fine students for being late?

10 02 2011
Maria Li

I believe positive economic incentives will be the best way to get students to come on time. In my opinion, I think students respond more to encouragement rather than discouragement, especially one that would have beneficial values to the student in some way. Therefore, the method the school should use is giving those on time a reward. For instance, a quiz for a bonus mark for those that arrive on time. This way, student arriving on time will benefit but those that are late will not be at a disadvantage. Grades and marks matter a lot to students in high school, so students will want to arrive early to boost up their marks. If a student is getting a 79% in a certain course, and if doing those bonus quizzes could boost their mark up to an 80%, they would have every reason to want to arrive at school on time. Humans naturally look for ways of self-satisfaction and continuously seek positive encouragement, therefore i think a positive economic incentive would be best for this situation.

10 02 2011
Benjamin Gray

To begin with, I do not believe that awarding the students that are on time is a good idea because students should be coming to school to learn, and not to be paid. I also do not believe that doing anything when the students arrive to school to keep them out of class even longer to issue a negative incentive is appropriate either. In my opinion whatever punishment is to be issued should be completed during class time or afterwards in order for the students to still be present for the daily classroom routine. I believe that the most effective negative incentive would be a unique punishment enforced by each individual teacher (such as embarrassment), and possibly an ultimate punishment issued by the principle such as suspension for a certain amount of lates.

10 02 2011
Kevin Yeo

The reason students are late is because there is not enough incentive for them to come on time to school. These students who are habitually late are the kind of person who values the importance of an extra 10-15 minutes compared to being on time to their classes. To counteract this problem, there must be either a reward or consequence that will force students to value the importance of timeliness compared to extra time. I propose a negative economic incentive such that a portion of a student’s mark is based on his timeliness. However, this portion of the mark must be significant enough such that it will force a student to value being on time. I believe that 5-10% of a student’s final mark being based on the timeliness is sufficient to sway a student’s value such that they will value being on time, thus fixing the problem of student lateness.

10 02 2011
Noah Schafer

I believe a good way to fix the lateness problem in the school would be to apply a negative social incentive such as detentions. It does not make sense for students to be rewarded for doing what is expected of them, so a negative incentive is really the only option. Giving students detention during such times as lunch, or after school prevents students from hanging out with their friends and relaxing during the time they have off. This is more effective compared to say calling assembly’s for lateness during class time where students don’t really feel they have been punished. As a student I know how frustrating missing lunch or staying after school can be, and would do my best to show up on time.

10 02 2011
Carolyne Wang

I remember seeing in my planner something about getting suspensions and talks with the principal if a student is too habitually late. I think the school should emphasize this and follow through with the policy. If I were a tardy student who realized that being late 5 times means talking to the principal, and that 10 lates is grounds for suspension, I would try harder to get to school on time. Not only does being suspended get me in trouble with my parents, but it will also remain on my student record and affect my chances of getting into postsecondary education. So, I think this negative social incentive would be effective in reducing the number of students that are late.

10 02 2011
Mike Seo

It is ridiculous that we should reward someone for being on time; after all, it is the students’ responsibilities to be on time. However, I still think that students who are not regularly late should be able to proceed to their classes. I do not think it is fair that some students who actually value education to be treated equally as those who do not. For example, the office can keep track of how many lates a student had for last couple weeks, and decide whether this student deserve to proceed directly to the class. What if for some good reason that you are late, and there is a very important test on that day?

For those who are regularly late, I think there should be multiple incentives to reduce the lates in the class. The limitation of library computer usage or books may be a good incentive for a starter. If this person is constantly late, a detention or a suspension may make them want to come to school early.

10 02 2011
Mike Seo

I believe the incentives I proposed would be negative economic incentives.

11 02 2011
Ilia Merkoulovitch

When it comes to being late, I believe positive incentives should be instilled on the students who regularly make it to class on time. Those who are often late make it a habit and it’s difficult to change the time they set their alarm, or how long they shower or eat. If instead of punishing those late, the students just missed out on extra marks, as Dani said, a day or two extension on a project, or whatever incentive the teacher gives. If the late student doesn’t care and continues to be late, then they won’t get any academic bonuses and that’s it. Sometimes, no matter what incentives give, a teenager just won’t care.

11 02 2011
Lok-Hin Yuen

Most people mentioned economic incentives (ie. marks), which I agree with to some extent. However, I also believe these incentives will only produce short term results. Charging students money would not work because there would be a lot of opposition not only from the students but the parents.
Anyhow, I propose modifying our social incentives. Honestly, our guidance office (with all due respect), do not exactly do the best job at giving the most accurate information (such as university caring about being in MaCS). I believe that more importance should be strained in giving students honest outlooks on their futures. Let’s be honest, not everyone is going to be doctors, lawyers, and accountants, and nor can be. I believe making people understand their courses, and how it will help them for their futures will change the way they view coming to school. I do not mean courses such as careers however, as that course is completely and utterly useless (in my opinion). I mean taking some time out of everyday classes because students will be bored out of their mind otherwise, and the information becomes less effective. We listen to our friends a lot more than we do teachers and parents. So if we can make learning something we feel personally attached to, it will conform others because of the whole bandwagon effect.
The other method I propose is to hire teachers on more strict interviews. This is a new generation, and a degree won’t cut it. To make students come on time, you have to make them want to come. This will improve the efficiency in the classroom for both the teacher and student’s learning. With some of the teachers we have in school today, coming to class and listening to them is like listening to a lullaby (a badly sung one) and falling asleep. Unless student’s come for that sleep. I doubt they feel inclined to come to class to listen to a teacher that can’t really teach. The incentive here is the genuine self-interest to learn.

11 02 2011
Lok-Hin Yuen

Ah, in hindsight this argument is flawed. Please disregard this. (or please delete the OP 🙂 thank you!)
I will re-write it more concisely.

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