catch up catch down

Word play. When I moved from Ohio to Arizona I found myself ahead of other students in school. I did that twice, fifth grade and 10th grade. So instead of catching “up” to them, did I catch “down” to them, i.e. fall to their level?
I did, BTW, and worked hard at it.
And as of this writing, Nov. 15, 2022, it looks like Arizona is about to elect a superintendent of public instruction whose main campaign slogan was “No CRT.”

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