By Sidney Anderson

Sometimes students fall behind with assignments and find themselves with a dilemma. Complete the assignment during ZAP (Zeros Aren’t Permitted) or receive a zero in the gradebook.

ZAP gives students an extra chance to get a grade in the gradebook for the assignment instead of a failing grade.

Principal Becky Balboa and staff implemented the program a year ago as a solution to encourage students who are not meeting the academic expectations in the classroom.  

“ZAP is a program designed to increase expectations of students who habitually, or occasionally, fail to complete and turn in assignments on time,” Balboa said. “Students who have zeros are likely to continue not handing in assignments, and therefore are at greater risk of failure and dropping out.”

ZAP involves the entire staff and clearly emphasizes the belief that assignments, projects, or homework are important and must be completed. The program directs students to use their abilities to acquire self-discipline and establish work habits that will serve them in an educational or work setting.

“I support the idea of it, but a concern is when some students use it as a crutch,” ELA teacher Jody Velde said.  “We still have some tweaking to do, and there are changes coming for this new semester.”

Students have an opportunity to turn in an assignment before ZAP starts at 3:30 each afternoon. If the student turns in the work ahead of time to Mrs.Balboa and it satisfies the criteria then the student will not have to attend ZAP.

ZAP was implemented in January, 2017.