make the grade

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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.
See also: grade, make
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

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.
See also: grade, make
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

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]
See also: grade, make
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

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.
See also: grade, make
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

make the grade

succeed; reach the desired standard. informal
See also: grade, make
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

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?
See also: grade, make
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

make the grade

To measure up to a given standard.
See also: grade, make
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

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, to
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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