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Lawmakers Fight Trend to Eliminate High School Valedictorians

stock photo of graduates
A number of high schools have chosen to stop naming a class valedictorian to reduce competitive pressures teenagers face.

Some high schools throughout Ohio have decided not to name valedictorians at graduation. But one state lawmaker is proposing a bill that would require schools to name at least one valedictorian or salutatorian. 

State Rep. Niraj Antani (R-Miamisburg) is proposing a bill that would allow districts to determine the criteria, but require at least one valedictorian. He said it would create competition.

“Getting rid of valedictorian is the first step in getting rid of grades, getting rid of GPAs, class rank and so that I think is very bad and we hear about millennials being entitled and perhaps lazy. Well it’s a result of decisions like this.”

Some school districts in Ohio have decided against naming valedictorians in recent years saying the competition was hard on the mental health of students. Some also said students who took classes like band were penalized because it was not weighted as heavy as some other subjects.