Standards-based Grading. Why Standards-based grading ?. Nation-wide 30-60 % of college students need remediation.
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Nation-wide 30-60 % of college students need remediation.
National research shows that 50% of those students who need remediation received As and Bs in the courses needing remediation (3 million new students enter higher education each year, and half take at least one catch-up course while they are enrolled.)
45% of AD12 students need remediation in college introductory courses
In the past thirty years the time (attending full-time and continuously) to obtain a “4 year-degree” has increased to five years. During the same time period high school GPAs are up.
Standards Based Grading is grading using student performance as the sole factor in establishing grades.
Standards Based Grading uses the overall trend in student performance. In other words, we look at the most recent academic performance of a student when establishing a grade.
Because standards-based scores are based on where a student is in relation to a standard, teachers will be looking at a student's most recent work. Teachers will not be averaging scores across an entire semester.
For example, imagine a student learning to convert fractions to a decimal-point format. A student may very well have some poor scores at the beginning of that unit of study, but hopefully the student comes to understand that concept after a couple of weeks of instruction, practice and study.
Averaging their poor initial scores with their improved later scores doesn't truly represent their final level of understanding. And the same is true if a student understood the early concepts but has a difficult time with the more complex ideas, or coasts along as the unit comes to a close.
Averages across weeks’ or months’ worth of work don't necessarily represent a student's true, current, level of understanding at the end.
Another change we'll see in the standards-based system is that teachers and students will no longer be tallying up 'points' to determine a grade.
In the past, 'points' might be earned by doing well on a test, turning in extra credit projects, participation, or helping out in the classroom in any number of ways. Standards-based grading
in the Five Star District will be based on a student's level of understanding in relation to a standard.
For example, if a student helps out to clean up a classroom after school, that good deed may get reported out as good citizenship on a report card, but it doesn't tell us how well they understand the use of commas in a series or how well they can apply the scientific method in various situations.
One other example to illustrate some of the main concepts of standards-based grading is to take a look at learning to play an instrument.
The first day a student picks up a clarinet we wouldn’t expect him to be able to play even an easy song. He must first learn the correct way to hold the instrument and how to make a sound.
There will be clearly defined expectations for where we expect students to be as their knowledge and skills progress and where they should be at the end of the course. (In fact, that’s why a continuum of classes is called a ‘course’.
It is a path of learning, understanding and proficiency.) Learning is a progression of knowledge, skills and abilities; and practice and re-work are key components of the learning continuum.
*Each of these areas will be assessed
in the Scholarly Habits section of the Report Card