WMS Grading Policy

As part of our school improvement effort, we are excited to continue the transition to standards-based grading. Our primary goals at Washington Middle School are to transition to a system of grading that allows for consistency among all teachers in one content area/grade level, ensure accuracy in our reporting, make grading meaningful, and support the ultimate goal of student learning. By using standards-based grading, we can clearly communicate to students and parents the learning goals for the quarter as well as the specific areas of strength/weakness for each individual student. This information assists teachers in making better decisions about instruction, allows us to meet individual student needs, and provides multiple opportunities for students to observe, practice, learn, and then succeed. This system allows for students to show they’ve learned the material by giving opportunities to re-learn and re-take assessments. The goal is to learn, even if it takes longer than others.

During each quarter, students will be graded on a Proficiency Scale for assessments. One assessment may have three-seven learning targets. Each of those targets are graded separately and entered into the gradebook as separate assessments. The scale for assessments is as follows:

1 - Far Below Proficient
2 - Approaching Proficient
3 - Proficient (this is the goal for the grade level requirement)
3+ - Above Proficient

Students will also be assigned class work and homework to help them practice and improve their skills. Homework and Classwork will be entered using a Y (Yes, the assignment was completed) or an N (No, the assignment was not complete). We believe that classwork and homework are very important in the learning process, but students are ultimately required to prove their learning on an assessment (assessments can be written, project, essay, and/or presentation).

Retakes and Continuous Improvement:
Students will have at least one chance to review and then retest any learning target they did not meet proficient. After that second assessment, students can continue practicing using online resources, meeting with a teacher during lunch, staying for Penny Lane or meeting with a tutor. Once they've completed at least one of those learning activities, they can apply to their teacher to retake the assessment again. All arrangements for third, fourth or additional retests will go through the classroom teacher. The goal is to ensure that students actually learn the material for their grade level rather than taking a low score and moving on. Retakes cannot be taken the last week of the quarter as grades need to be submitted by the teachers.

Report Card Grades:
Quarter letter grades will be determined the last week of the quarter by dividing the number of 3's or 3+'s by the total number of target skills assessed. The final grades will be determined based on the following scale:

A - more than 90% of the targets are at proficient
B - 80%-89% of the targets are at proficient
C - 70%-79% of the targets are at proficient
D - 60%-69% of the targets are at proficient
F- 59% or below of the targets are at proficient

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