Should parents pay students for good grades?

United States
June 7, 2007 9:36am CST
I overheard a parent talking yesterday. She was saying that she had to get a lot of money together because her kids got great grades. Seems she pays the children 20 dollars for each 'A,' 10 dollars for each 'B,' and 5 dollars for each 'C.' Her children had each brought home straight 'A's,' so she was off to the bank! What do you think of this practice?
14 people like this
44 responses
• United States
7 Jun 07
I hate to hear about parents like this. My sister and I earned good grades because we knew that we needed to earn our way to college, not because our parents forked out a bunch of money. By paying for good grades, you make school work cheap. You're telling your child that there is no substance in what they are doing other than the money they get at the end. The child doesn't learn to take pleasure in the grade just for what it is. Plus, it encourages cheating. I feel the same about this as people who punish for bad grades--children should be able to work at school without fear of punishment or the promise of reward. That way they learn to do it for themselves.
3 people like this
@winky73 (1396)
• United States
7 Jun 07
Thank you....I could not have said it better myself.
@sk1976 (45)
• United States
14 Jun 07
My overall feelings on this are mixed - but specifically regarding your reply... A financial incentive for making good grades is no different from getting a paycheck, or a raise at work, for a good job performance. It is the way the world works - whether that is good or bad. In addition, it can teach kids about earning money, spending it wisely, and responsibility for buying and maintaining their own toys/games/etc Would you be willing to go to work every day for free or in exchange only for a pat on the back from your boss for a "job well done" ?? Children, especially younger ones, cannot see as far into the future as we can. They expect, and require, more immediate rewards. Their concept of time is not the same as ours. It is only as they get older, take on more responsibility, and realize that they will be rewarded for hard work, that they will learn the tools and develop the motivation to succeed later in life. Just my two cents
• United States
7 Jun 07
I don't have a problem with the practice, although this person is paying way too much, lol. But if you are going to do it you have to keep in mind the general level of each student. Sure many students can get As with a little effort but other's struggle all through school just to maintain Cs (like my brother). It would have been very unfair for my parents to only pay for As and Bs (which I got with little studying) because my brother would have just gotten frustrated and would have felt left out. To him, getting a C was a great great and my parents acknowledged that. If he had mostly Cs with only 1 or 2 Ds or better yet 1 B then he got rewarded (either a flat fee for a good report card or a video game or something he wanted). I, on the other hand, had to have mostly As with only a few Bs and Cs to get the reward. I really didn't care. I did as little work as I needed to maintain my B average.
2 people like this
@castleghost (1304)
• United States
7 Jun 07
We do pay our children for good grades. We don't however pay that much. Our children job is going to school so we do believe that if they do well in school they deserve some kind of reward. I get paid money to do a good job at work so we feel that it is only fair that the children get paid or doing a good job at school as well. We pay them each a certain amount each week for how well they did at school that week. When their report cards come out they can earn bonus for having high marks. It teaches the child that if they do their job well that they can earn bonuses.
2 people like this
@speedy1279 (2667)
• United States
7 Jun 07
I don't think parents "should" have to pay thier kids for good grades. But using it as an incentive to achieve better grades is okay. Like if the kid had some C's on his/her report card and you told them if you can bring your grades up I will give you x amount of money. Giving them money to encourge them to raise thier grades I feel would be more appropriate. I definitly won't be giving my kids money for C's. But would encourge them to bring them up and then reward them for bringing them up.
2 people like this
@Modestah (11192)
• United States
10 Jun 07
I think that this practice does not give the kids the correct message... they are being told to do a task to the best of their ability not because it is the right thing to do, and it is expected of them - but rather to do it so that you can get a reward. what happens when there is no reward? I can imagine they will become resentful (to their wife, children, boss etc) and maybe not even understand why they are resentful. or how about the child who does do the best he can, but can still only muster a C due to learning difficulties or a poor teacher, or a very harsh unjust teacher? what message does he receive? c's c's and d's why should I even bother trying..... eeyore, woe is me.
1 person likes this
@Modestah (11192)
• United States
13 Jun 07
thank you for the BR. you had a lot of replies to choose from, it is very much appreciated.
@teleios (738)
• Philippines
8 Jun 07
hhmmmm. i'm all for rewarding your kids if they did something good, but i don't think we should necessarily use money as the reward. that would give them the idea that money is the ultimate goal, that it's the reason why we strive to work hard at what we do.
1 person likes this
• United States
10 Jun 07
Money is the reason I strife to work so hard. I go to college and get good grades so that I can get a high paying job to make a little money and be able to buy the nice things that I want in life.
• United States
10 Jun 07
Personally, I think it is stupid. The children should learn for self respect, not rewards of money. But, who says that parents have sense in their heads?
1 person likes this
@villageanne (8554)
• United States
10 Jun 07
We used to reward our kids for their grades. They were very good in school so I am glad that we did not give them cash. We let them have their favorite meal or something like that. We never did give them money though. I think it is good to reward them for a job well done.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
8 Jun 07
It's not a good practice because everytime you want your kids your kids to do something you'll have to pay them off just to do or hear what you have to say. Though its a good bribe but they will know the value of studying. Studying should be a virtue for them to learn and excell not because your paying them off. Its a responsibility for them to strive hard because they want you to be proud. Yu should not associate money with studying.
• Philippines
8 Jun 07
i think that it's both a good thing and a bad thing. a good thing because kids are encouraged to get good grades, so they get money. in essence, work hard and it'll pay off. however, some kids resort to cheating. and the essence of education goes down the drain. bad thing too, since the kids study well for money, not for the sake of studying. but it boils down to one thing, how the deal was presented it's timing.
1 person likes this
• United States
8 Jun 07
I do pay my son for good grades, but it is because he has ADHD and his grades have never been really high all the time. It is something for him to see that he needs to try harder and study harder, and focus to achieve the money. It seems to be working for him in everything but math, which he has a very hard time with. I think that parents that pay students who are A students anyway, are just breaking themselves. When do you stop, after college? I just don't understand that way of thinking, if my son got good grades all the time I would not do it.
@jogie_bien (1103)
• Philippines
7 Jun 07
its better that the child must understand very soon that they must work by theirself and not giving pleasure for their parents.Because they are the one to build their future someday and parents are not always there for them.To be not independent with the parents.What if they dont have money anymore,maybe the child dont make effort anymore to gets high grades.i think its a bad practice like that.
1 person likes this
@34momma (13891)
• United States
7 Jun 07
i think she is crazy!! i don't think children should get paid for things that they are suppose to do. i would not give my children a nickle for bringing home the good grades that they should bring home. let's say my son is a c student in math and he came home with a b or a. now i might make him a special dinner but give him money for bringing his grade up. no that to me is just crazy. i don't even pay them to do chores.
1 person likes this
@KissThis (3006)
• United States
7 Jun 07
I think that if a parent can afford to do that then it is wonderful. I pay my children weekly for getting good marks in school. My daughter who is the oldest gets paid $10 a week if she brings home good marks on all of her papers and doesn't get into trouble. My son who is one grade lower gets $8 for doing the same thing. My youngest who doesn't really get grades gets $5 for doing what he is surpose to do. I know that most people would consider this a bribe but I feel that their going to school adn getting good marks and behaving is their job so they deserve to get paid for it. I also charge them for bad marks and behavior as well.
1 person likes this
• United States
7 Jun 07
I don't really know. I am on the fence. In some way it doesn't seem so bad and in others it seems horrible. Can't explain that too well. Maybe they aren't being paid but rather rewarded for their hard work?
1 person likes this
• United States
7 Jun 07
The good grades will pay for themselves eventually if they stick it through. Colleges will end up carrying part of or the bulk of their post-high school education. What parents should do is teach their children to take pride in the work that they do, so that the child doesn't have to be bribed into doing something that is ultimately good for him or her.
1 person likes this
@Signal20 (2281)
• United States
7 Jun 07
My dad used to pay my daughters I think 5.00 for every A they got. Then he finally realized he was being scammed by his granddaughters lol. They were getting him with the mid term progress reports on top of the report cards lol. He finally said, why do you guys get so many report cards? It was funny :) I don't think it's bad, in moderation. That's a bit extreme what you're talking about though lol. Whatever works to get kids motivated to get good grades is good I think. Yes, it's bribery, but if it's working, great!!
1 person likes this
@angelface23 (2497)
• United States
7 Jun 07
I think it is a good idea maybe until they reach highschool. I think it is more motivation for them to get good grades. I think that it needs to be explained that doing what your supposed to isnt always rewarded with money and presents. Maybe it's just a fun thing she likes to do with her kids.
@brokentia (10395)
• United States
7 Jun 07
Once upon a time my partner would pay for good grades. But only A's. However, since me becoming a stay at home mom again, we had to abandon that practice. Which honestly sucks for my eldest daughter because she has had straight A's since 3rd grade! :) Now, there is no way we could afford to pay them for good grades! Seven kids all in school. That is a lot of money just for school supplies and such.
1 person likes this
7 Jun 07
I don't think so. It sounds rather bad to me, sure a "reward" would be nice but to pay them to pay attention and try to do well is very wrong because it's the kids future. Those who do this should get the money back once they start a job and encourage fair play. I'm also thinking it wouldn't get them anywhere except a better place if they didn't so.. I'll shut up now ;) ~Joey
1 person likes this