2019-2020 Grading Procedures, Regulations, and Explanations for Grades Pre-K - 5 | Manual de Calificaciones Procedimientos, Reglamentos, y Explicaciones Grados: Prekínder-5to

2019-2020 Grading Procedures, Regulations, and Explanations for Grades Pre-K - 5 (Print Version - PDF)

Manual de Calificaciones Procedimientos, Reglamentos, y Explicaciones Grados: Prekínder-5to (Print Version - PDF) 

 

 

INTRODUCTION

Every teacher must keep an electronic grade book. Please be reminded that these guidelines apply to all teachers. There are no exceptions. Grades, according to the law, are for the purpose of assessing the TEKS and reflect mastery of grade level standards. The Grand Prairie ISD Grading Policy, Regulations, and Explanations is published for the following reasons:

  1. Law and policy require that we establish procedures to ensure that grades are reflections of Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills mastered.
  2. Grading must be as consistent as possible from teacher to teacher and from school to school within the District to assure fairness.
  3. Students and their parents have a right to know exactly how grades are determined.
  4. How we grade has serious implications for individual students, for the school, and for the District and the community as a whole.
  5. Regulations are important support for teachers in the event a grade is challenged.

It is the teacher’s responsibility to read and know the contents of the grading policy and procedures. Teachers must keep student engagement in mind when designing lessons and assignments.

Remember our goal is student success: All children can and will learn at a high degree of mastery. Use
these guidelines to help assess not only how individual children are performing, but also the effectiveness
of instruction.

ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT: PROMOTION

Promotion From Kindergarten To Grade 1

Kindergarten is not mandatory in Texas. Therefore, promotion from kindergarten to first grade is automatic. A parent may request a child be retained in kindergarten. 

Grades 1-5
In grades 1–5, students shall be promoted who score 70 or above in three of the following areas: reading, language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies. For other students, the principal shall decide whether to promote or retain each student individually after consulting with the student’s teachers based on the following:

1. Mastery of grade-level essential knowledge and skills;
2. Previous retentions;
3. Chronological age;
4. Maturational development;
5. Attendance record;
6. Experiential background;
7. Estimation of the student’s ability and achievement;
8. The student’s motivation and attitude; and
9. Any other factor the principal considers important.
[GPISD Board Policy EIE(LOCAL)]

GRADING PROCEDURES FOR GPISD

  1. Every teacher must keep a grade book. Teachers are required to use the on line electronic grading system. The responsibility for the correctness of the grade reports issued each nine weeks lies with the teachers and the school principal.
  2. This program helps to assure assignments are graded and dated. Principals automatically have access to grades.
  3. Grades are not given for things such as discipline rewards, dressing up for Halloween, good attendance, etc.
  4. A student’s grade may not be penalized when he/she is tardy to class, fails to put his/her name on the paper, uses pencil instead of pen, etc. None of these behaviors is related to the mastery of the TEKS. Refer to the student code of conduct book for student behavior. A student's grade may not be penalized when he/she does not participate in an activity or performance outside the school day.
  5. All assignments and tests must be graded in a timely manner. The work has little value for the students unless they receive immediate feedback.
  6. Grades must be posted weekly by classroom teachers. Parents have access to their student’s grades with the expectation that grades are posted in a timely manner.
  7. A minimum of nine grades for each subject, per nine weeks is required and should be spread out fairly evenly over the grading period. The grades must be taken from a variety of grading methods as listed below.
    • District Instructional Assessments (where appropriate)
    • Traditional essay examinations with general questions
    • Essay examinations with definite questions
    • Short answer objective tests or quizzes
    • Problem-situation tests
    • Oral presentations
    • Projects or independent study/research paper
    • Analysis of creative products
    • Compositions appropriate to the subject area
    • Journals, learning logs, portfolios
    • Daily recitations or homework papers
    • Demonstrated proficiency in English usage
    • Skills demonstrations or performance
    • Teacher observations of participation in individual and/or cooperative learning
    • Book reports/reading responses
  8. All assignments must be labeled and dated. Any rubric or individual system used for grading must be available for principal or parent information/clarification.
  9. Once the minimum number of district assigned grades has been given during the designated grading period, one assignment grade can count more than one time. No one grade can be counted more than three times.
  10. Generally, all homework during a nine weeks period should not comprise more than 10% of the nine weeks average.
  11. Grades for assignments given during one nine weeks may not be held over for the next nine weeks. Complex or lengthy projects, however, may overlap nine weeks if the overlap is a planned one, not just a failure to get one’s grades done. Teachers must communicate to students in advance how the grades will be counted.
  12. Teachers may drop grades as long as the minimum number of grades per nine weeks is met.
  13. Students may be allowed to earn extra credit. See section on extra credit for guidelines.
  14. A grade becomes final at 3:35 p.m. on the last day of a nine weeks grading period. The
    grading period is defined according to the official school district calendar, and absolutely no work is permitted after the close of the last school day of the nine weeks, except to remove the record of “Incomplete” caused by one or more absences.
  15. “I” or “Incomplete” is to be given only when a student has been absent and has not had
    sufficient time to make up the work, ordinarily one day for each day of absence. Under extenuating circumstances, a teacher may allow more time, but that must be documented with the reasons when the grade is changed.
  16. Grading for special education students should follow guidelines outlined in each individual student’s IEP. The teacher should have a copy of the student’s modification plan in the classroom.

    When a student has been in attendance less than four weeks of a nine weeks period, the GPISD average grade and previous school's average grade should be averaged together. (These grades may be "weighted" according to the number of days for which each average grade was taken.) If grades have been received from another campus, the average can be entered multiple times to average it with the current assignment grades. The instructional media specialist (IMS) can assist in how to enter the grades from a previous campus. If grades have
    not been received from another campus, an “I” for incomplete can be given with a note to parents explaining why.
  17. Composition grades in 1st through 5th grades are based on the premise that students learn to write by writing, not through practicing grammar or sentence completion activities. Students are empowered by writing when they write authentically across genre and across the curriculum. Our district focus has been to incorporate the components of the writing process (pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, and publishing) when writing to communicate and/or learn. Grades are to reflect the use of the writing process and effective writing strategies that incorporate student progress in spelling, grammar, and written composition. The composition grade for the report card will be calculated in the following manner:
    • Written Compositions = 75% (a minimum of 9 grades per nine weeks)
    • Grammar and Spelling = 25% (a minimum of 9 grades per nine weeks)

Grades should be spread out over the nine-week period, approximately 1 per week. If a student is failing the first half of the grading period, enough grades should be given the second half to enable him/her to have the opportunity to bring the grade up to passing.

Grade 1

  • Spelling grades may be taken from weekly word wall or other type tests. Grammar and spelling
    grades may be taken from revising and editing compositions.

Grade 2

  • Spelling grades may be taken from weekly word wall or other type tests. Grammar and spelling
    grades may be taken from revising and editing compositions.

Grades 3 – 5

  • Composition grades should be taken from a variety of different types of compositions, including
    both narrative and expository writing. A composition grade does not necessarily come from a completed composition. It may be taken from various parts such as introductions, conclusions,
    etc., depending on the writing focus for the week.
  • Grammar and spelling grades should come from compositions. They may be taken from the
    revising and editing portion for the composition process or from other requirements: word wall
    words, vivid verbs, content words, punctuation, etc. Although spelling and grammar instruction
    should take place daily, it should be a mini-lesson within the composition instruction. Weekly
    spelling tests should not be given.

B. GRADE REPORTING PROCEDURES FOR LONG TERM SUBSTITUTE

 

When a teacher is out for several days, the campus administrator, the team leader or another teacher on the team may enter grades and assignments. If the principal and teacher want a longterm substitute to enter grades, the principal must first contact the Senior Chief Officer of Human Capital and then contact the GradeBook Administrator with the name and date range of the assignment for the substitute.

C. RETEACH

Reteaching is an integral part of the lesson cycle and may occur in many different situations. Some examples include:

  • During direct teach as a teacher checks for understanding
  • During guided practice as a teacher monitors
  • During independent practice as students work individually or in cooperative learning
    groups

1. When a student fails (earns below 70) any assignment, the teacher has the responsibility to reteach
the TEKS not mastered. Remediation should occur immediately.

2. Reteach does not necessarily mean that a grade will be changed. (See Reassessment below for times when a grade must be changed.)

3. Reteaching is not simply going over the correct answers of the assignment, and it is not reteaching the material in the same way it was previously presented. Rather, the teacher must present the material in a new way, using different materials if possible and/or appealing to a different learning style. Remediation may occur in many different situations. Some examples include:

  • A teacher works with small groups during class time while other students work
    independently
  • A tutorial
  • A remedial class

D. REASSESSMENT

A student who earns below 70 on a test, with the exception of nine weeks or semester exams, shall be given an opportunity to be assessed after participating in a re-teaching process within a reasonable designated time period.

1. Upon the completion of the retest, the teacher shall record the higher of the two test grades unless the retest is greater than 70. The retest grade cannot exceed 70. If a child makes above 70 on the retest, a 70 will be recorded.

2. Teachers must develop a system to indicate grades which result from reteaching.

Teachers are reminded that they have the responsibility and authority to delete the grades for any assignment. Grades may reveal that the assignment was inadequate for whatever reason or if a substantial percentage of the students in a class failed to pass. In this case, the whole class should be re-taught and the new test or assignment grade should be recorded.

E. EXTRA CREDIT GUIDELINES

  1. Extra credit may be earned by students, but the teacher must be cautious in assigning it. Students should not be allowed to do lots of easy things to make up points due to failure to turn in compositions, take a test, etc.
  2. Use extra credit as a way of allowing some choices, rewarding extra reading, attempting a more challenging problem or project, or of making an extra effort to achieve whatever level the student performs.
  3. Extra credit must relate directly to the TEKS and must be clearly labeled in the grade book.
  4. No extra credit assignments are allowed to be turned in after the last day of the nine weeks in
    order to improve a grade.

F. LATE WORK GUIDELINES

These guidelines do not affect work turned in late because of an absence. (For absence reasons, see Attendance and Grades [Section G].) The district expects students to turn in assignments at the appropriate time. Grades in Grand Prairie ISD are based on the mastery of Texas Essential
Knowledge and Skills.

Grades K-2
If a student fails to turn in his/her assignments, these options are available in grades K-2:

  1. The student may stay after school the following day, after parents have been notified, until the assignment is complete. The appropriate grade penalty will be assessed.
  2. The student will lose 10 points each day the work is late.
  3. Teachers may allow exceptions to the above conditions for extenuating circumstances
    following consultation with the principal. (The student’s failure to comply with either of these options may result in a discipline referral
    to the office.)

Grades 3-5
If a student fails to turn in his/her assignments, these options are available in grades 3 – 5:

  1. The student may stay after school the following day, after parents have been notified, until the
    assignment is complete. Students may only earn a maximum of 85.
  2. Work will not be accepted after 3 days (after the original due date).
    • One day late - maximum grade is 85
    • Two days late - maximum is 70
    • Three or more days late - the student will receive a zero.
    • Teacher must document by dating the grade book.
  3. Teachers may allow exceptions to the above conditions for extenuating circumstances
    following consultation with the principal.

(The student’s failure to comply with either of these options may result in a discipline referral to
the office.)

G. GRADING STANDARDS AND GRADE CHANGES

Grand Prairie ISD Regulations

  1. Absolutely no grades may be changed unless the teacher made an error in computing or recording a grade, or unless an incomplete grade is being removed, and/or a transfer grade is being entered.
  2. The principal will require an explanation for any grade change and none may be made except
    with his/her approval. All changes must be requested in writing on the Grade Change Form
    and then submitted to the principal for his/her review and decision.
  3. Teachers are responsible for the complete accuracy of their grade reports.

Accountability Standards

  1. District guidelines must be observed by all teachers and will override any site-based management decision.
  2. Every teacher’s grade book must reflect the documentation to support evidence of mastery and/or the nine weeks grade in each subject.
  3. The grade book is available for the principal’s review.
  4. Every teacher must complete grade entries by the assigned due date and time each reporting
    period.

Grade Calculations

  1. All grades will be submitted in numerical, not letter form, except in Pre- Kindergarten and Kindergarten, regarding Conduct grades, E=95, S=85, N=75, and U=65. When students transfer
    to GPISD from a school that gives letter grades, a uniform grading system for translating letter grades is used in all elementary schools.

A+ = 98 A = 95 A - = 90
B+ = 88 B = 85 B - = 80
C+ = 78 C = 75 C - = 70
D = 69
F = 69 

  1. No weights will be placed on grade assignments online except for composition. All grades will be
    averaged equally.
  2. Teachers may count test grades twice by inputting it two times.
  3. Homework should never be a large part of the nine weeks grade. If there are only 6-9 total grades
    entered (the minimum number of grades is 8), only one can be a homework grade. If there are 10
    or more grades no more than 10% can be from homework.
  4. The Language Arts Composition grade will be weighted with
    • 75% composition
    • 25% grammar and spelling

H. ATTENDANCE AND GRADES

Grand Prairie ISD Policy

Make-up assignments or tests must be made available to students after any absence. Teachers shall inform their students of the amount of time allotted for completing make-up work after an absence; however, the student is responsible for obtaining and completing the make-up
assignments in a satisfactory manner within the allotted amount of time. Generally one day is allowed for make-up for each day of absence. [GPISD Board Policy FDD (LOCAL)] Students shall make up assignments and tests after absences. Students shall receive a zero for any
assignment or test not made up within the allotted time. [GPISD Board Policy EIAB (LOCAL)] Teacher(s) may assign additional work to assure students who have been absent have sufficient opportunity to master the TEKS or to meet subject or course requirements. The assignments shall
be based on the instructional objectives for the subject or course and may provide greater depth of subject matter than routine make-up work.
“A student shall receive a grade no greater than 70 for work made up following an unexcused absence.
“The District shall not impose a grade penalty for make-up work after an absence because of suspension.” [GPISD Board Policy EIAB LOCAL)]

A student not actually on campus at the time attendance is taken may be considered in attendance for Foundation School Program purposes in these situations: Board-approved activities, mentorships, Medicaid students, religious holy days, health care appointments (note from the health care professional).
[Refer to GPISD Board Policy FDD (LEGAL) for details]

Grand Prairie ISD Regulations

To the extent possible, students who are absent due to participation in approved school activities or for religious holy days shall make up missed work in advance. Students, who, through no fault of their own, are not enrolled for the entire grading period; semester or course, shall be provided opportunities to earn credit for the semester or course or a grade for the grading period. Teachers shall take into consideration the student’s particular circumstances in determining appropriate
opportunities, which shall include, but not be limited to:

1. Testing (advanced placement or mastery of the TEKS)
2. Tutorial sessions for students who enroll late to master the TEKS already covered in the class.
3. Individualized work for students, such as migrant students, who must withdraw early, to work ahead and ensure exposure to and mastery of TEKS.

I. HOMEWORK GUIDELINES

  1. Student achievement rises significantly when teachers regularly assign homework and students conscientiously do it.
    • Extra studying helps children at all levels of ability.
    • Homework boosts achievement because the total time spent studying influences how
      much is learned.
  2. Well-designed homework assignments relate directly to class work and extend students’ learning beyond the classroom.
    • Homework is most useful when:
      • Teachers carefully prepare the assignment.
      • Teachers thoroughly explain assignments.
      • Teachers give the same care preparing homework assignments as they give to
        instructional planning.
      • Teachers explain assignments that require students to think because such assignments
        are more interesting and foster the students’ desire to learn.
      • Teachers plan homework assignments reaching beyond supplementing the classroom
        lesson to teaching students to be independent learners.
      • Late work guidelines apply to homework. See page 7.
  3. Sometimes students do not turn in their homework and therefore, do not receive a grade. The following are suggestions on how to handle this:
    • Call the parents and request a conference. Parental support is essential for a good
      education. Explain your problem and ask for their help.
    • Be sure that you have provided enough in-class practice before you assign homework.
      Students may attempt the assignment if they feel they can be successful.
    • Begin homework assignments in class so that everyone can at least begin the work under your supervision.
    • Be sure all students understand the consequences of not turning in their assigned work.
    • Refer students to the counselor.
    • Conduct before or after-school study halls.
    • Teach study skills deliberately and consciously every day.
    • It is extremely important to assign major assignments in smaller chunks so those steps are
      due at various times. In this way you can monitor progress.
    • Let students know the purpose of the homework - why are you assigning it. Let them know
      that you care about their progress.
    • Conduct individual student conferences.
    • Never assign homework as a punishment. Sound teaching practice forbids it.
  4. Generally, all homework during a nine weeks period should not comprise more than 10%
    of the nine weeks average.

J. GRADING GUIDELINES FOR ELEMENTARY PHYSICAL EDUCATION

Grades in physical education, as in other subjects, should be directly related to the student’s achievement of instructional objectives that are developed from the state for Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills. The level of student performance in relation to the instructional objectives should be the determining factor in assigning grades. Standards of norms that are used must give
opportunity for all to be successful. Grades should be used wisely as a factor in motivating a student to attain the primary objectives of being encouraged to pursue a lifetime of health and enjoyment through sports activities.
Teachers should not use factors such as behavior or attitude to assign grades.
Grading criteria should be composed of:

  1. Knowledge and Skills – written tests or checklists (demonstrating and understanding of rules,
    strategies, concepts, and benefits related to instructional activities) and skills tests or
    checklists (understanding progression of basic fundamentals, form in execution of skills,
    standard of performance, and applying skills in game situation). Grade shall not have a value
    greater than 50%.
  2. Participation – students participate in class activities. Grade shall not have a value greater
    than 50%.
  3. Grade sheets must be submitted to kindergarten teachers. There will be no insert; grades will
    be recorded on the student’s report card by the classroom teacher. Physical education teachers
    need to turn in a grade sheet to the classroom teacher at least two days before the end of the
    nine weeks.

Kindergarten is on a nine-week grading period, and there is no grade given for the first nine weeks. K students will be given an S or N on their PE grade sheet, and their classroom teacher will place a mark in the appropriate box (developing at expected level – S or experiencing difficulty – N).

  1. First through fifth grade students will be given number grades.
  2. PE teachers must post grades online for grades 1-5 weekly. A minimum of 6 grades must be posted each nine weeks.

K. GRADING GUIDELINES FOR ELEMENTARY MUSIC/FINE ARTS

Grades in music and art as in other subjects, should be directly related to the student’s achievement
of instructional objectives. The level of student performance in relation to the instructional objectives should be the determining factor in assigning grades, with student success always a priority. [Classroom art activities should be integrated with the core-curricular subjects.]

  1. Grade sheets must be submitted to kindergarten teachers. There will be no insert; grades will
    be recorded on the student’s report card by the classroom teacher. Art and Music teachers
    need to turn in a grade sheet to the classroom teacher at least two days before the end of the
    nine weeks. Kindergarten is on a nine-week grading period, and there is no grade given for
    the first nine weeks. K students will be given an S or N on their Music or Art grade sheets,
    and the classroom teacher will place a mark in the appropriate box (developing at expected
    level – S or experiencing difficulty – N).
  2. Music/art teachers must post grades online for grades 1-5 weekly. A minimum of 6 grades
    must be posted each nine weeks.
  3. First through fifth grade students will be given a number grade.

L. REPORT CARDS/PROGRESS REPORTS/ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT RECORDS

All report cards, grades 1 – 5, will be reviewed online by parents. No report cards, grades 1 – 5, will be sent home. If a student fails any subject at the end of the nine-week grading period, the teacher must contact the parent and document the contact. Campuses may determine the method of contact.

Pre-kindergarten
Achievement or progress in pre-kindergarten shall be reported as “1 - above expectation”, “2 – at
expectation” or “3 – still developing”. Report cards will be sent home beginning with the second nine weeks. The parents will be requested to attend a parent conference at the end of the first nine weeks.

Kindergarten
Achievement or progress in kindergarten shall be reported as “developing at expected level” or “experiencing difficulty”. Parent conferences will be held at the end of the first nine weeks. Kindergarten report cards will be sent home beginning with the second nine weeks.

Grades 1-5
In grades 1 through 5, achievement shall be reported to the parents as numerical grades for all
subjects.

“Borrowing points” from a previous or future nine weeks grade is absolutely forbidden for any student. All teachers have the responsibility to enforce this rule for all students.

Promotion/Retention Coding

A student cannot be “placed” in the next grade level.

  1. When a student passes all subjects and STAAR, write “Promoted” on the report card and AAR.
  2. When a student does not pass one or more subjects and will not be attending summer school, write “Retained” on the report card and AAR.
  3. When a student does not pass one or more subjects and plans to attend summer school, write
    “Retained Pending Summer School” on the report card and AAR
  4. When a student is retained pending STAAR mastery, write “Retained Pending STAAR” on the
    report card and AAR.
  5. When a student is retained pending Summer School and STAAR, write “Retained Pending Summer School and STAAR” on the report card and AAR.
  6. If a student is marked “Retained Pending…” and then is promoted, write on the AAR “Summer Promotion”.

Progress reports/Notice to parents (other than report cards)

Conferences may be scheduled at the request of a teacher or parent for students in grades 1-5 with an average of 73 or below. Interim progress reports shall be issued after the fourth week of each grading period for these students. [GPISD Board Policy EIAB (LOCAL)]

Grand Prairie ISD Regulations

  1. A four week progress report must be sent to parents after of the first four weeks of the grading
    period for students in grades 1-5 whose average is 73 or below. No progress reports will be sent for students with an average of 74 or above.
  2. The four week progress reports must be given to students to take to their parents or mailed according to the district progress report schedule.
  3. At any time after the four weeks the child is failing, a progress report or other computerized
    report must be sent to parents before the end of the nine weeks.
  4. All teachers, sponsors, and/or coaches of extra-curricular activities are expected to check regularly on the academic progress of the students in their activities. Students shall not attend any contest after school hours if they are academically ineligible.

M. ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT RECORDS (PERMANENT RECORDS)

Always use black ink on Academic Achievement Records. Any corrections must be made by drawing a single line through the error, writing in the correction and initialing the correction. See the Report Card section for directions on writing “Promoted” or “Retained” on the AAR.

PPCD
An insert will be included to denote the year's progress. The first year of PPCD enrollment information is recorded in the Pre-Kindergarten column on the AAR. Mark out "Pre-K" and write "PPCD". The second year of PPCD enrollment information is recorded in the Kindergarten column. Mark out "K" and write "PPCD".

Pre-Kindergarten
An insert will be included to denote the year’s progress.

Kindergarten
An insert will be included to denote the year’s progress.

Grades 1- 5
A sticker with grades and attendance will be provided at the end of the year. Teachers should place these on the AAR in the designated spot. No grades or attendance have to be written in the AAR prior to the end of the year unless the student withdraws. If a student withdraws prior to the end of the year, grades and attendance should be entered in the AAR. A copy of the current report card should also be placed in the AAR upon the student’s withdrawal.

Students Moving Into The District During The Second Semester
When first semester grades were given by another district, list the grades on the Academic Achievement Record. Denote on the AAR which district assigned the grades. Ex. "grades from ____ ISD".

Special Education

  1. Do not place new information on the AAR regarding any Special Education placement including.
  2. Do not put “promoted by ARD” on an AAR. An ARD committee cannot promote or retain a student.
    The level of mastery can be adjusted by the ARD committee. The decision to reduce the level of
    mastery for a student must be decided on an individual basis and an appropriate ARD process must be followed.

N. AWARDS AND HONORS (optional)

Grades for behavior are not counted when determining student eligibility for the honor roll. Only academic grades are used in placing students on the honor roll. Academic grades reflect mastery of the TEKS in content areas only.

  • “Superintendent’s” Honor Roll
    • Students will be placed on the “Superintendent’s” Honor Roll each nine weeks if they have achieved 90 or above in all core subjects and E or S in the other areas such as art, music, and PE for that reporting period.
  • “Principal’s” Honor Roll
    • Students will be placed on the “Principal’s” Honor Roll each nine weeks if they achieved 80 or above in all core subjects and E or S in the other areas such as art, music, and PE for that reporting period.