Standards-Based Grading Teaching for Learning at North Muskegon Public Schools

North Muskegon Public Schools is dedicated to teaching for learning. As our motto states,

"We are an Educational Community that gives our BEST and expects the BEST."

We concentrate our efforts in the areas of curriculum, instruction, and assessments through the Professional Learning Community (PLC) process.

As a PLC, we continually ask ourselves the following questions about our students:

What do we want each student to learn?
How will we know when each student has learned it?
How will we respond when a student experiences difficulty in learning?
How will we respond when a student already knows it?

(DuFour, DuFour, Eaker, & Many, 2010)

As professional educators, we continue to research and learn more about student learning and growth. As a result of our research and learning, we have come to realize that our NM "BEST" should be measured through the teaching and learning of our essential standards. These essential standards are the standards we, as a school, guarantee to our students because of their importance to the learning and growth processes.

In order to achieve mastery of these standards, students, teachers, and parents must work together to provide the opportunities for students to succeed. In our view, our working together will best be achieved through the processes and end-products of standards-based grading.

So, to present a comprehensive view of standards-based grading in an easily accessible format, we have compiled the following information. Some of the information is presented in word or chart form, while other pieces of learning are presented as embedded videos.

What is standards-based grading?

Standards-based grading “involves measuring students’ proficiency on well-defined course objectives.” (Tomlinson & McTighe, 2006). (Note: Standards-based reporting involves reporting these course objectives rather than letter grades at the end of each grading/reporting period.)

(http://www.competencyworks.org/analysis/what-is-the-difference-between-standards-based-grading)

"What standards have I mastered?"

(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7m4762pjH8)

(Note: Link above is inactive due to it being part of an embedded document. Click the one below, instead:)

www.competencyworks.org/analysis/what-is-the-difference-between-standards-based-grading

(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJBGQ7_LSVA)

All NMPS teachers and administrators studied a research-based text entitled, "A Repair Kit for Grading: 15 Fixes for Broken Grades" (O'Connor, 2011), in order to examine our current grading practices in comparison to best-practice. Below is a summary of the 15 Fixes in a "Don't to Do" format. We continue to improve, one fix at a time, and are working toward better and better processes for reporting progress to our students and parents.

(Adapted from O'connor, 2011)

Process to Product

The process of standards-based learning and grading has many facets such as (but not limited to): grading using a four-point scale, retakes and re-dos, not using zeros on a 100 point scale, and making doing the work the natural consequence for not doing your work.

(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h-QF9Q4gxVM)

Goal for NMPS: Our product, then, is a student who learned the essential standards, NOT simply a letter representing a summary or average of all progress in a course or subject area.

The two videos below from teacher and researcher Rick Wormeli outline the ideas behind redos, retakes, and do-overs:

(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TM-3PFfIfvI)

(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgxvzEc0rvs)

Doug Reeves cites the DuFours and many other leading educational experts in this practitioner-focused video:

(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jYHGTkUU7g)

Works Cited

Note: Web links are listed in the order of appearance on this site.

DuFour, R. (2010). Learning by doing: a handbook for professional learning communities at work. Bloomington, IN: Solution Tree.

O'Connor, K. (2011). A repair kit for grading: 15 fixes for broken grades. Boston: Pearson.

What is the Difference between Standards-Based Grading (or Reporting) and Competency-Based Education? « Competency Works. (n.d.). Retrieved January 05, 2017, from http://www.competencyworks.org/analysis/what-is-the-difference-between-standards-based-grading/

A. (2012, November 16). Standards-Based Grading Overview. Retrieved January 05, 2017, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7m4762pjH8

What is the Difference between Standards-Based Grading (or Reporting) and Competency-Based Education? « Competency Works. (n.d.). Retrieved January 05, 2017, from http://www.competencyworks.org/analysis/what-is-the-difference-between-standards-based-grading/

H. (2013, September 20). Standards Based Grading. Retrieved January 05, 2017, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJBGQ7_LSVA

S. (2010, November 10). Rick Wormeli: Standards-Based Grading. Retrieved January 05, 2017, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h-QF9Q4gxVM

S. (2010, December 14). Rick Wormeli: Redos, Retakes, and Do-Overs, Part One. Retrieved January 05, 2017, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TM-3PFfIfvI

S. (2010, December 15). Rick Wormeli: Redos, Retakes, and Do-Overs, Part Two. Retrieved January 05, 2017, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgxvzEc0rvs

Doug Reeves: Elements of Grading Part 4: Standards Based Grading. Retrieved January 05, 2017, from (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jYHGTkUU7g)

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