THE PRESENT system of marking enlisted men for quarterly marks and for promotion examinations is adequate and satisfactory, but the method used in that system is neither accurate nor satisfactory. All one has to do to prove the above statement is to glance over the records of two or three men under his charge; the facts are glaring. A man comes up for promotion with a 3.94 total multiple, and as a result is placed 17th or 18th on the list and misses out. His 3.8 in leadership for a couple of quarters has caused him to miss the rate.
Now compare the 3.8 with marks given midshipmen while at the Naval Academy. A mark of 3.4 means a star on the collar, a reference as “savvy,” and the envy of the not so brilliant midshipmen. The marking of enlisted men is the same in theory, very different in practice. A 3.9 means an average enlisted man, a 4.0 means anywhere from better than average to excellent, while anything less than 3.8 denotes a marked deficiency in either the character or ability of the man. Such a usage does not permit of relative marking.