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above (one's) pay grade
1. The responsibility of those who are of a higher authority than oneself, denoted by the level of pay that one receives in comparison to one's superiors. All these questions you're asking are above your pay grade. He had some great ideas about how to run the company, but contributing such things was above his pay grade.
2. Above or beyond one's general skill, knowledge, ability, or willingness to participate. He soon realized that the details of the IT development project were a bit above his pay grade. Sorry, fishing garbage out of the lake is above my pay grade.
beyond (one's) pay grade
1. The responsibility of those who are of a higher authority than oneself, denoted by the level of pay which one receives in comparison to one's superiors. All these questions you're asking are beyond your pay grade. He had some great ideas about how to run the company, but contributing such things was beyond his pay grade.
2. Above or beyond one's skill, knowledge, ability, or willingness to participate. He soon realized that the details of the IT development project were a bit beyond his pay grade. Sorry, fishing garbage out of the lake is beyond my pay grade.
On the same level. Typically said of streets and railroad tracks. A: "Is the train station up on the hill? Because I don't know that I can make it all the way up there!" B: "No, don't worry, the station is at grade with the street."
See also: grade
up to grade
Meeting a necessary standard. I don't think this product is up to grade—it shouldn't break down this quickly.
make the grade
To satisfy a certain standard; to succeed. He submitted some writing samples, but I'm not quite sure these make the grade. I was unsure about being able to make the grade as a salesperson, but my numbers speak for themselves now.
To give someone a low grade or score on something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "grade" and "down." I'll grade down anyone who hands in a sloppy book report. I hope the teacher grades Joey down for talking during my presentation.
1. A student who is intently and primarily focused on getting good grades. I know some of the kids in my class are just grade-grubbers—anxious to get an A above all else.
2. A student who tries to persuade the teacher to change their grade, as through flattery or questioning. He only complimented your outfit because he's a grade-grubber who wants you to turn his B into an A. All the grade-grubbers are saying that I misled them with how I worded one of the questions on the test, ugh.
1. noun Of a student, the act of working intently, and primarily, on getting good grades. I know some of the kids in my class are grade-grubbing and only want to get an A above all else.
2. noun The act of trying to persuade a teacher to change one's grade, as through flattery or questioning. All the grade-grubbing needs to stop—that question is not misleading, and I'm not changing any of your grades.
3. adjective Describing a student who is solely focused on getting good grades. You're bound to get a few grade-grubbing students who just want an A and don't really care about the material.
grade someone down (on something)
to give someone a low ranking, rating, or score on some performance. I had to grade you down on your essay because of your spelling. Please don't grade me down for a minor mistake.
make the grade
to be satisfactory; to be what is expected. I'm sorry, but your work doesn't exactly make the grade. This meal doesn't just make the grade. It is excellent.
make the grade
Satisfy the requirements, qualify; also, succeed. For example, Angela hoped her work in the new school would make the grade, or Barbara certainly has made the grade as a trial lawyer. This expression uses grade in the sense of "accepted standard." [c. 1900]
make the grade
COMMON If you make the grade, you succeed at something, usually by reaching a particular standard. As a child, she wanted to be a dancer but failed to make the grade. Top public schools have failed to make the grade in a recently published league table of academic results. Note: In American English, a `grade' is a slope. This expression was originally used in connection with United States railways to refer to a train which succeeded in climbing a steep section of track.
make the gradesucceed; reach the desired standard. informal
make the ˈgrade(informal) reach a high enough standard in an exam, a job, etc: You’ll never make the grade if you don’t work hard before the exams. ♢ Do you think she’ll ever make the grade as a journalist?
To give someone a lower rank or score, usually with respect to something evaluated: The teacher graded me down on my English test because of my terrible penmanship. The driving instructor graded down our group because we weren't listening.
1. n. an earnest, hardworking student. (In the way a pig roots or grubs around for food.) If there are too many grade-grubbers in a class, it will really throw off the grading scale.
2. n. a student who flatters the teacher in hopes of a higher grade. A few grade-grubbers help assure old professors that the world is not really changing at all.
1. n. working hard at one’s studies in hopes of a high grade. If all you’re here for is grade-grubbing, you’re going to miss a lot.
2. n. flattering a teacher in hopes of a higher grade. Some teachers don’t mind a lot of grade-grubbing.
3. mod. having to do with students who are only concerned with getting high grades. Two grade-grubbing seniors came in and begged me to change their grades.
make the grade
To measure up to a given standard.
make the grade, to
To reach a given standard or pass a test. This term apparently alludes to climbing a steep hill or gradient and was transferred to mean any kind of success in the first half of the twentieth century. An early appearance in print is in S. Ford’s Inez and Trilby (1921): “Three days! I doubt if she can make the grade.”
See also: make