Gradebook

Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

The right reward? A Vero Beach High student wins a Jeep for being good

Once upon a time, students behaved themselves simply because that was the expectation.

These days, we hear more and more stories about distractions and the need to gain kids' attention in ways that will keep them. Money for good grades. iPods for showing up for the FCAT.

At Vero Beach High, a 15-year-old sophomore who can't even drive yet won a used Jeep Grand Cherokee in a raffle for students who hadn't received a discipline referral or had an unexcused absence since March 1.

One of the school's English teachers told the Vero Beach Press Journal that behavior has improved since the school started giving away prizes like this. “It’s a great incentive to encourage positive behavior throughout the whole school year,” teacher Tammy Turner said.

Is this the right path for schools? Or are we, in the words of Alfie Kohn, punished by rewards?

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 11:02am]

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