GRADING SYSTEM, PROGRESS REPORTS, REPORT CARDS
In Lexington District One, the grading system at all levels reflects achievement-based mastery of skills at a student’s instructional level. Progress reports for students in kindergarten through fifth grade give information about a child’s current level of performance and achievement as compared to state standards. For students in Grades 6–12, the progress reports show a student’s actual numeric grades. Students in self-contained special education programs receive report cards appropriate for those classes. In order to receive a grade for any nine-week period, a student must complete required work and fulfill state attendance requirements. Transfer students must attend at least one-half of the days of any marking period in order to receive a grade. Progress reports list a student’s number of absences and tardies.
ELEMENTARY SCHOOL GRADING PRACTICES
Elementary School In Lexington County School District One, we recognize that providing feedback to students is an essential part of the learning journey. All students are expected to perform at high levels and revise their own work as they progress toward mastery of content and skills. In an effort to “Empower each child to design the future” and respond to the challenges that we have faced and continue to face together with COVID-19, we have redesigned what our grading system will look like in the elementary grades through the use of Feedback Driven Progress Reporting. Now more than ever, students will arrive at school in very different places along academic and social emotional learning progressions. In order to gain a better understanding of what students need at any moment in time, teachers will need the opportunity to approach learning with a focus on individual growth and goal setting. Within the Feedback Driven Progress Reporting system, we will focus on priority standards in the areas of English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies.
Through formative assessments and ongoing teacher feedback, students will be assessed as:
- Not Yet Met (Student is not able to demonstrate mastery of the grade-level standard at this time).
- Partially Met (Student demonstrates mastery of some, but not all, of the grade-level standard).
- Met (Student demonstrates mastery and application of the grade-level standard).
These ratings were selected to emphasize a positive growth mindset to meet social-emotional needs.
MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOL GRADING PRACTICES
Assessment practices should support student learning, achievement and mastery of standards by connecting descriptive, timely, ongoing and consistent teacher feedback directly to standards. Assessments are divided into two categories: formative and summative. Formative is considered “practice” and summative is considered the “end performance.” Formative and summative assessments focus on standards based learning targets. Formative assessments are assessments for learning and have an important role to fulfill in identifying when a student is ready to undertake a summative assessment. Formative assessments will count 20% of the students overall grade during a marking period and Summative assessment will count 80 % of the overall grade during the marking period. The key principles of formative assessment are: 1) sharing the learning targets with students from the beginning of the learning; 2) making adjustments in teaching as a result of formative assessments; and 3) providing descriptive feedback to students from assessments. It is important that students complete each formative assessment to the best of their ability. In some cases, a teacher may withhold the administration of a summative assessment until such time as enough practice information is gathered through formative assessments. Since formative assessments (minor assessments) are considered “practice,” they are not heavily weighted in the grading system. A summative assessment is a measure of a student’s ability to demonstrate the concepts, skills and knowledge embedded in standards-based learning targets. A summative assessment is an assessment of learning, and it is heavily weighted in the grading system. Teachers, school leadership, and school district personnel will collaborate to determine how assessments are combined to calculate course grades.
The district uses the following marking system based on the South Carolina Uniform Grading Policy as required by state law:
90 to 100. . . . . . A
80 to 89. . . . . . . B
70 to 79. . . . . . . C
60 to 69. . . . . . . D
0 to 59. . . . . . . . F
The district issues progress reports every nine weeks. Final grades on the progress report are official and remain in the student’s permanent record.