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“Welcome to the new school year, parents. This year, we’ve made some changes to our grading process. This 12-minute video will briefly summarize how we’re using online resources to allow you to monitor and evaluate your child’s progress on a real-time, 24/7 basis. Please click below to begin.”

So we’re not getting report cards this year? Weird. Okay. (click)

“Welcome to PowerSuccess School MetricsSolutions, the convenient online portal for tracking your child’s successes at a glance. You’ll notice the page opens into Classic View. Click the button marked List View, which will be easier.”

 List View, got it. (click)

“List View expands into Grid Views for all eight of your child’s classes, listed here in reverse order. Over time, this Grid View will auto-populate with live evaluations of your child’s potential success metrics potential.”

 Wait, does that mean grades?

“Sort of. We don’t use grades now, we use evaluations of standards relative to your child’s individual talents and the aggregate performance of students in his or her age group, potential earning category and hair color, merged with bar-graph spreadsheets that determine within three significant digits whether your child will ever attend college. Those are also live-updated, just FYI.”

 Wait, so there are grades, or…

“Pay attention, we’re not even two minutes into this video. Instead of seeing A, B, C, D or F, you’ll see Exceeding Expectations, Meeting Expectations, Being Largely Unaware of Expectations, Needing Improvement and Doing Pretty Much Fine But Still Disappointing Your Parents.”

 That seems unusually harsh for a…

 “Who’s talking here? You or the video?”

 Uh, I guess you are.

“That’s right I am. AS I WAS SAYING there are standards here for college and career-ready standards, which are standardized as per the All Standard Children Success Future Act of Winning, which is crucial to success. Here you can see that Mr. Haverbaum has collected enough evidence to accumulate a Standard Grade for reading, vocabulary, interpretation, grammar, semicolon use and penmanship, which will be aggregated in a Master Pie Chart that will provide a complete picture of your child’s performance as well as predict his likelihood of finding a suitable mate.

Wait, parents expect you to know that?

“Parents expect us to know all. Now, when you scroll down you’ll see Standards Graded, which is sort of like Standards Pending and Assignments Unfinished, but more purple-y.”

I definitely see the purple. It’s a nice purple.

“Thanks, I liked it, too. If I’m not sure what a standard is about, I click on it and pull up Description and Comments and scroll to the third text box while navigating to Literacy nav-bar and double-clicking on Author’s Purpose and Point of View. If you’d like, this can be read to you in the voice of Hugh Jackman.”

Got it.

“What do you see?”

 I see a B?

“Great! Your child will take a gap year in New Zealand.”

 How can you possibly…

“WAIT, I’M STILL DEEP DIVING INTO THESE METRICS. You can see here that for the assignment regarding Shakespeare’s “The Tempest,” your child earned a B in writing but a C in understanding the rich symbolism of Shakespearian fairies, which averages out to a quantitative score between 14 and 659.”

What if my kid doesn’t turn in an assignment?

“Obviously we have anticipated this. You can see in Grid View but not List View that there is a gold box that means the assignment has not been turned in. When it is turned in, that gold box will turn green and a small flower will appear and you will catch a Caterpie.”

Sweet.

“You’re terrible, everybody has a Caterpie. While in Grid View, click on Grades and Assignments to see the unified score of your son’s first-semester grades. To reach his standardized test scores, you’ll need to log out, log in to another site, establish a 12-digit PIN, scan your left retina, register with your state senator and turn in your Caterpie.”

Can I just not do that?

“I mean, if you’re not invested in your child having a rich, meaningful life you can post about via 30 Instagram pictures a day, you can do whatever you want.”

Okay, this is starting to seem confusing, can I just talk to the teacher before I…

“HA talk to the teacher! You and your Cro-Magnon family must be adorable. While you guys work on inventing the wheel, may I remind you that teachers and parents can no longer interact with one another. We might actually get rid of teachers. We’re thinking about standing up a mop with a laptop on it.”

So how do I ask to talk to the…

“METRICS! BEAUTIFUL, BEAUTIFUL METRICS!

Okay, you know what, I’m just gonna close out of this and email the teacher after…

“DO NOT CLOSE THE SITE EVER. THIS SITE PROVIDES LIVE METRICS OF YOUR CHILD’S PERFORMANCE, WHICH IN TURN EVALUATES YOUR PRIDE IN HIM, PREDICTS HIS LIKELIHOOD OF GETTING INTO THAT COLLEGE YOU’RE PUSHING HIM TOWARD, GAUGES YOUR PERFORMANCE AS A PARENT AND DISTILLS HIS ENTIRE WORLD DOWN TO COLD, HARD, MULTI-PROCESSED INTEGERS. Soon we will track his calorie intake and cereal preference. Hoping to have that operational next year, along with the holograms.”

Right. I’ll just figure this out as we go, I guess?

“You do that. It’s been a pleasure introducing you to our grading matrix. Also, if you have questions, please click on the video marked QUESTIONS ABOUT PREVIOUS VIDEO. It’s 54 minutes long.”

You can find Jeff Vrabel, a writer, @jeffvrabel and on jeffvrabel.com.

Like On Parenting on Facebook for more essays, advice and news. You can find more parenting coverage at washingtonpost.com/onparenting, and sign up for our newsletter here.

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