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OP-ED: They Should Replace Green Passes With the Gold Star Sticker System From Preschool


Photo from Creative Commons / CC0

The reason I am the strong, independent, beautiful, smart, humble woman I am today is for one reason, and one reason only - the validation I received due to the gold star sticker system of my preschool. Everyday, I would patiently wait for the teachers to announce who would receive stars that day. Could it be me? Did I, Margarita Matta, act respectfully and with grace during nap time? Did I clean up my space after going to absolute pound town on the cafeteria mac and cheese? Did I correctly count how many purple sheep were on the strangely psychedelic worksheet our teachers asked us to reference? The answer to all of these questions is yes.

The gold star sticker system is a time-honored tradition, and in my opinion, it should not stop at preschool. Getting a gold star every day for being just generally better than any of my other classmates helped me to feel seen in my superiority. 

Thus, I truly see no reason why Penn should not continue this way of evaluating their students. The gold star sticker system is a perfect way to reward our students for their successes. You were able to produce spit into a tube within an allotted two-week period? Gold star. Made the dean’s list? Gold star. Completed your entire Freshman year without getting MERTed? Gold star. Didn’t immediately correct someone in an aggravated tone when they ask if you go to Penn State? Double gold star. That’s right.

Wear these badges with honor, with pride, and with confidence. These stickers should not be taken lightly. I highly encourage the Penn community to consider creating this system to reward our students, and look forward to this change taking place. Now, students can walk down locust, into their classrooms, and continue their academic lives with the public knowledge that everyone around them can see their gold star stickers with admiration and respect.