FAQ about Oakridge Standards-Based Progress Reports
We will use this document to update the Oakridge community on information regarding standards-based progress reporting. It will change as we work through this process together. Thank you for your patience and partnership.
How will students be informed of this change in grading practice?
- All students in Grades 3, 4, 5 will watch a video made by Dr. Wright explaining the change in grading practice. They will have an opportunity to ask their teacher questions about this change. Teachers will continue to communicate with students about how students are progressing and what students can do to improve their understanding of a specific standard.
- The video that students see will be available on the Oakridge website for families to view.
How do I know what the 4 descriptors mean? Do they correlate to any previous grading system?
- The descriptors on the standards based progress report do not correlate with any previous grading practice.
- Standards-based progress report descriptors:
- Exceeds standard – Student consistently demonstrates higher-order thinking in the application of the skills mastered under the Virginia standard.
- Meets standard – Student consistently demonstrates mastery of the Virginia standard.
- Developing mastery – Student is in the process of mastering (e.g., the student is learning) the Virginia standard.
- Insufficient evidence – The teacher does not have evidence to determine a student’s mastery level for this skill.
Should I expect to see mostly “exceeds standard” by the end of the year?
- No. Students are expected to meet the standard in all areas by the end of the year. The descriptor, “exceeds standard”, is used only when a student consistently demonstrates higher-order thinking in the application of the skills mastered under the Virginia standard.
Will there be any information included about how students can move to the next level of mastery?
- The report card does not provide specific information on what the student needs to do to further progress on a specific standard. Teachers and students communicate regularly about how a student is progressing and what the student can do to improve.
How do you decide what standards to include on the progress report each quarter?
- We report on the Standards established for instruction in public schools in Virginia, by the Virginia Department of Education, and as organized by the Arlington Public Schools Scope & Sequence documents that guide our curricula.
- Many standards are cyclical and are taught and assessed throughout the school year. Meeting or exceeding of standards is expected on the 4th quarter report card. Therefore, most students will receive Developing Mastery on their progress report the first quarter of the school-year.
Will the report card include information on my child’s reading level?
- Yes. Each child’s report card will include information about whether your child is reading below, at or above the grade level benchmark for the end of each quarter.
How much is subjective?
- Standards based report cards strive to be as objective as possible. The Standards of Learning are determined by the Virginia Department of Education. Grade level teams work with content coaches to create a common understanding about what evidence demonstrates that a student is developing mastery, meets the standard or exceeds the standard for each standard taught.
Will APS middle schools understand standards based progress reports?
- Yes. Middle schools teachers also used standards based instruction. The Department of Learning is working with middle school administrators and teachers to understand the change to the elementary report cards.
What happens if my child transfers out of APS, will his/her new school understand standards based progress reports?
- Many other districts in Virginia and other states are familiar with, or use, standards based instruction and reporting.
How is student progress monitored in standards based instruction?
- Teachers’ instructional practices support standards-based instruction and assessment throughout the entire school day. Teachers in each grade level and content area collaborate as a Collaborative Learning Team (CLT) bringing research, skills, professional development, tools, resources, and a variety of support staff – including our robust Instructional Coaches team and a variety of Special Education professionals and service providers – to bear on our goal: To ensure every single child masters every required skill in a meaningful, authentic way. Our CLTs use a profound array of resources, data, evidence, and professional networks to enhance their skills and help them to target each student’s unique learning needs. Through their work in CLTs teachers are constantly monitoring and assessing student progress on a variety of standards.