Student assessment and grade reporting systems policy
The Guilderland Central School District places strong value on its students and their development as learners. Throughout the student assessment and grade reporting process, it is important to emphasize our mission statement: empowering all students to succeed in the 21st century. As such, student assessment and grade reporting requires thoughtful and informed professional judgment. Our challenge is to balance reporting needs with instructional purposes.
No one method of student assessment and grade reporting serves all purposes well. Under this premise, it is the intent of this policy to work toward a multi-faceted, comprehensive reporting system. When considering the purpose of any student assessment and grading system, three questions are often raised:
• Why do we give grades and report on student progress?
• For whom is the information intended?
• What are the desired results of this process?
While there is much debate in response to these issues, our approach to student assessment and grade reporting should be based on a multiple format that is easily understood and enables teachers to:
• Communicate the achievements of students to parents and others;
• Give information that students can use for self-evaluation;
• Provide incentives for students to learn;
• Identify students for different educational options; and
• Evaluate program effectiveness
The Board of Education realizes that classroom teachers have the primary
responsibility to evaluate students and determine student grades. Student
assessment and grade reporting is intended to be a positive tool that
indicates to parents, the student, and teaching staff the level of
performance and development in each class or subject area in which a student
At all levels within our school system, teachers are expected to identify what they want their students to learn, what evidence they will use to verify that learning, and what criteria they will use to judge that evidence. This approach should be communicated to students and parents.
The Board of Education recognizes that students are individuals with their own abilities and capabilities. The district will utilize a local grading system appropriate to elementary, middle, and high school levels.
Information can be reported in a variety of ways. In addition to formal report card grades or progress reports, feedback about student performance should include parent conferences, telephone contacts, standardized test score results, etc. Therefore, student assessment and grade reporting should relate to learning criteria based on the following guidelines:
Focus on what students know and are able to do at that time, typically through examination scores, quiz results, overall assessments, or other culminating demonstrations of learning.
Student assessment and grade reporting should reflect not just the final results but also how students got there. This takes into consideration overall effort, homework completion, and class participation.
Considers how much students have gained from their learning experiences. This approach is highly individualized and emphasizes how far students have come rather than any specific achievement level.
The above components should be addressed in any student assessment and grade reporting system so that the information provided can be of greatest value.
Source: Dr. Thomas Guskey-University of Kentucky
Policy adopted December 10, 2002, Guilderland Board of Education.