Among the first improvements LVHS teachers and administrators made to our grading system was to remove the impact of factors not related to student learning. Among these, several examples were:
- Grade penalties for poor attendance
- Grade penalties for disciplinary consequences
- Grade penalties related to compliance with deadlines
- Grade bonuses / penalties for classroom participation or collaboration (group work, not dressing for gym, etc.)
- Grade bonuses for 'extra credit' on quizzes or tests
- Grade bonuses / penalties for organization (notebook checks)
- Grade bonuses / penalties for other non-academic activities (bonus points for bringing in food for Operation Feed, grade penalties for not dressing up for certain events, etc.)
Insisting that grades reflect student knowledge and skills means excluding these factors. It doesn't mean that we shouldn't encourage, incentivize and reward things like "good organization" or "good attendance" or "meets deadlines." We believe in teaching and measuring these things, and our teachers collaborated to create standards for each. We report on student performance within these standards, using the same gradebook as we use to report academic grades.
Below are our four 'Behavioral Standards' we use school-wide, along with rubrics that explicitly describe student performance at the four levels of our reporting scale:
Attendance and Punctuality Rubric: 9 week measurement cycle
Student is present for tests / presentations, notifies teacher of school-related absences ahead of time, and is never tardy without a pass. Student makes up work promptly upon return.
Student is present for tests / presentations, may fail to notify teacher of school-related absences ahead of time, is rarely tardy or absent, and makes up work promptly upon return.
Student misses test / presentation day either with good reason or prior notice; tardiness / absence hinders learning. Makes up work with teacher prompting.
Student misses test / presentation day without good reason or prior notice, is habitually tardy or absent, or shows no responsibility for making up work.
Timely Work Completion Rubric: 9 week measurement / reporting cycle
Student turns in work by teacher deadlines and effectively uses time in class without exception.
Student turns in completed classwork and homework by teacher deadlines with rare exceptions, and uses class time productively.
Student work is sometimes late, completed after deadlines, or incomplete. Student may not use class time wisely.
Student work is frequently late, completed after deadline, or incomplete.
Quality of Work Rubric: 9 week measurement / reporting cycle
Student displays evident attention to detail and directions in all work, desires excellence and is working up to potential. Student is academically honest.
Student work meets standard, but may not demonstrate absolute best effort all the time. Student is academically honest.
Student work sometimes meets the minimum standard, but not all the time. Lack of consistency makes it difficult to deduce student ability and potential. Student is academically honest.
Student work is frequently sloppy, below standards, and not reflective of student ability. Student has been academically dishonest.
Cooperative Work Rubric: 9 week measurement / reporting cycle
Student works effectively and productively with all peers, consistently makes meaningful contributions to group work and shows leadership.
Works effectively and productively most of the time. Makes meaningful contributions to group work.
Lack of communication or collaboration skills sometimes impairs productivity of the group.
Hostility or refusal to work or communicate with group members frequently or seriously impairs the productivity of the group.