Originally Posted By: Bostonian
It is problematic that two students doing very different levels of work can both get an A in the same class
This is about closing gaps... or the appearance of closing gaps in knowledge, by closing the gaps in assigned grades.The identical grades may make it appear that students had identical performance on identical tasks, with identical task demands.

Unfortunately this means that assigned grades are no longer a proxy for the level of a student's performance or measurement of a student's knowledge base.

Originally Posted By: Bostonian
...but grades before high school don't matter much.
This may have been true in the past, however all grades are now permanently stored in Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems. The existence of this data throughout a student's life means that it can be analyzed at any future time, and items which may seem inconsequential now may in the future be deemed to be of greater importance.

Grades which are contrived to show equal outcomes by all students may:
- inaccurately represent student growth and progress,
- skew GPAs and class rank,
- influence college admissions,
- demotivate gifted students,
- give an inflated sense of accomplishment to students assigned an "A" grade for lower levels of work.

Studies such as the NWEA - Fordham Do High Flyers Maintain Their Altitude? (Sept 2011), indicate that some students may become "descenders" within a given one-third of their class. Unfortunately, this may inspire some schools to seek strategies to intentionally create "descenders," in order to close gaps and achieve equal outcomes.