I've been reading more and more about standards-based grading, and I see great possibilities. I have grown weary of our rank and sort methods.
Is anyone using standards-based grading (using school-based standards)? I wonder how that translates to traditional end-of-term grades on the report card. I also wonder about parent reaction.
I used a standards based grading system at the for one quarter this year. It was for a AP Stats course, so I focused on the skills/standards of binomial distributions, normal distribution calculations, sampling distributions, about 2 more.
My thought was to try to focus on the big topics.
Because I am a math teacher and a tremendous nerd, I used the power rule regression that marzano talks about, but I included a initial grade of zero. So that students didn't try to game the system too much.
The end of term reports, are basically A is a majority of the topics at a proficient level, and the rest a progressing level. If you are even below on one of the progressing level steps then you fall to a B. The rest you can see in the attachment, and I stole most of that from Marzano.
These were second semester seniors, and so I got zero parent reaction. Part of the beauty (and the horror) of sbg, is that the grades can be "fixed". Since you are not looking so much for them to do it at a particular moment then they can try again and again, and again. Which leads to many meetings and assessments.
My experience as a independent school teacher is that this process is the norm for many students already. There was I think more stress around SBG, but it was more productive stress. The students recognized it was "on them" to do well.
A few more B's, but no more C's, D's, or F's. Parents didn't really seem to worried about it. Especially if there are opportunities for students to improve. I think that that is really what want most parents want.
I had no failures.