For many students, including high-achieving students throughout our community, this pandemic is jeopardizing even the most basic of human needs. Family stability is being tested in ways that transcend socioeconomics and access to resources. Abraham Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs” illustrates that the most basic physiological and safety needs such as food, water, warmth and security must be met before higher-level needs such as esteem and self-actualization can be satisfied. In other words, you need a belly full of food and to know that you’re safe to achieve your full potential. Continuing to grade students by traditional measures will not only widen the achievement gap between students in this district, but it can also disadvantage high-achieving students who are trying to report and maintain letter grades as well.