This section is designed to ensure that all students are aware of the classroom (and school) policies. Breaking these policies can have serious consequences.
In my classes I use a method of grading known as Standards Based Grading. This measures the student’s mastery of the essential standards for the class, or how well the student understands the material in class. At the beginning of each unit, I will break down the unit into a series of standards (aligned to the Common Core State Standards), in which the students learning will be assessed. These assessments will vary in their form, they may be observational assessments, traditional pen and paper tests, projects, essays, discussions, or reports. The grade the student receives will be based on all of the evidence that is collected.
The purpose of this transition is to provide a clear picture of student learning. This benefits everyone. For me it enables me to accurately evaluate the students learning needs. It also provides an understandable picture of the students’ progress, that both the student and parent can use to their advantage. It highlights area in which the student struggles, and areas in which the student is successful. I feel that this picture is far more useful that receiving a grade of say 75% on an assignment as it clearly shows what areas need improvement.
How does this differ from the standard % grading system?
Standards based grading assesses the student’s mastery of the learning by evaluating the learning as a whole. Homework contributes to this grade, but isn’t specifically graded. A 70% homework grade doesn’t relate to the learning, just the students ability to complete their homework.
The grade the student receives specifically focuses on their academic performance. It does not take into account non-academic factors such as behavior, attendance, attitude, and so on. However, poor performance in non-academic areas is always reflected in academic performance. Any non-academic issues will be reported to the parent via parental outreach. Non-academic issues have a negative effect on the classroom environment and will not be tolerated. As the school currently requires percentile grades to be submitted standards based grades will be converted to percentile grades prior to the end of each marking period.
The advantages of standards based grading
As stated the major advantages of standards based grading is it enables me to provide grades that are accurate, consistent, meaningful, and supportive of learning.
Standards based grading addresses these 4 criteria in the following manner:
The student’s grade is based on academic factors, the students learning is demonstrated and reported without the influence of non-academic factors. These other (mostly non-academic factors) are still critical to the student’s success, but will be communicated in a different manner.
Each unit/assignment the student will be given a clear understanding of what is expected, and what area of learning is being assessed. These will be in the form of a rubric and/or proficiency scale.
In order for a grade to be meaningful it has to communicate what learning has taken place. Using standards based grading the grade reflects the students mastery over a particular standard and/or skill, as opposed to a student’s ability to complete homework, or do well on a single test.
• Supportive of Learning
Standards based grading supports learning by focusing on a student’s mastery of the learning. In a standard grading system a student may have to achieve a 75% on an assignment, that assignment may address 5 separate skills. This means that a student may not have mastery over one or more of those skills, yet still receive a passing grade. Standards based grading allows the teacher and student to discover and address areas that need improvement. Using standards based grading students can take control of their own learning by requesting a standard reassessment assignment. This allows a student to demonstrate their own mastery of a skill (any reassessment must be approved by the teacher prior to the student completing it)
How does this affect the student grade on Skedula?
As standard based grades are in many cases formative many assignments will not directly influence the grade that the student achieves. Skedula will be updated with but the final grade, and will be calculated at the end of the marking period.
Students will be able to access their grading portfolio through www.my-grades.net and examine their progress of specific standards and assignments.
- Be respectful to all members in the classroom, including yourself.
- Attend all classes, be on time, have the right equipment, and be prepared to learn.
- Follow the schools discipline code. No eating in the classroom.
- You are permitted a bottle of water to drink.
- Complete the required work to the best of your ability.
- All cell phones and electronic devices must be kept off, and out of sight, at all times students are in the building. This includes hallways, bathrooms, and the cafeteria.
- Cell phones and electronic devices cannot be charged at any time in the building.
- Headphones are to be kept out of sight. Headphones that are visible will be confiscated and returned at the end of the day.
- Videotaping or taking photographs while on campus is strictly prohibited. Students found to be violating this rule will be subject to discipline as per the NYC DOE Discipline Code.
- If cell phones or electronics are seen OR heard at any time, students are subject to the consequences listed below.
- In case of an emergency, if a staff member is present students should notify the staff member to receive instruction on if they should use their cell phones.
Consequences for violation of the cell phone/electronics policy
- 1st Offense: Item is confiscated and held in room 168 to be returned at the end of that school day. In addition, a Dean’s Office referral will be completed and the student’s parent/guardian will be called.
- 2nd Offense: Item is confiscated and must be picked up by a parent/guardian.
- 3rd Offense: Students may have the cell phone privilege revoked and be subject to a pre-suspension conference.
- No hats are permitted to be worn in school.
- No eating or drinking in classrooms (except bottled water).
- No going to the bathroom before you get on the bus for a trip.
- No going to the bathroom for the first and last 10 minutes of class.
- Use appropriate language at all times.
- No gang colors.
- You are expected to attend every class for which you are scheduled.
- You are expected to be on time for every class.
- If you are going to be absent your should have a parent or guardian call the school.
- A doctors note is required for all absences.
- Creating and expressing your own ideas in course work.
- Acknowledging all sources of information.
- Completing assignments independently or acknowledging collaboration.
- Honesty during examinations.