PPS & Grant HS Grading Practices
It is a teacher's role to establish grading criteria and implement a policy that is clear and fair in accordance with district approved policies and procedures. Grading practices need to be predetermined before the course is offered, written in the course syllabus and clearly communicated to families and students. To that end, Oregon Department of Education (ODE) regulations require all courses that award credit to have a syllabus available for families and students to view. PPS teachers are expected to abide by this ODE requirement and use the online syllabus program to write each required syllabi. After approval by the school administrator , the syllabus is posted on-line for students and parents to view.
- All PPS high schools use an AF or proficiency system for recording grades. The option of using a Pass / No Pass (P / NP) substitute for a letter grade may be available to students.
Grade Notations and Guidelines
- A letter grade of A, B, C, or D is passing and indicates a level of achievement.
- Although a letter grade of D is figured into a student's GPA (D = 1 point) a letter grade of D may indicate that the student has not demonstrated adequate proficiency to move on to the next level.
- Even though PPS awards credit for a letter grade of D, the Oregon University System and the NCAA may determine that a student earning a D in any core class does not meet their requirements.
- A grade of F or WF (Withdraw / Fail) indicates that performance in a class was not at a level sufficient to earn credit toward graduation. An F / WF grade is averaged into a student's cumulative GPA.
- Three weeks prior to the end of the semester / two weeks prior to the end of the trimester: If a student withdraws from a class, an “F” is recorded on the transcript. No exceptions.
- A notation of Incomplete indicates that the student did not submit sufficient evidence to meet course requirements or demonstrate proficiency within the grading period.
- An Incomplete (I) notation should rarely be used, based on unforeseen circumstances beyond the student's control and accompanied by a written plan. The plan should include a timeline for completion, requirements to complete the course and obtain a passing grade and current grade earned. An “I” grade requires prior building administrator approval.
- If there is an agreement between the teacher, and the family, and the building administrator approves:
- The student has up to nine weeks from the date a grade is issued to complete the work, and obtain a new grade. Otherwise the "I" will revert to the initial grade earned.
- A detailed, written plan using a district form will be provided at the end of the grading period to ensure that the student and family understand the requirements needed to replace the “I” with a grade.
- If an Incomplete is given at the end of the second semester in June, the nine week time period to replace the “I” begins with the start of school the following academic year.
PASS / NO PASS
Core courses required for graduation are NOT subject to the Pass / No Pass Option. However, credits earned from secondary schools outside of the US will be transcribed as P / NP in
accordance of PPS 4.20.024-AD
- In courses fulfilling elective credit or under special circumstances , students may request within the first 15 days of each semester to take a course pass / no pass.
- After this time period (see above) and under extenuating circumstances, only a building administrator can initiate a Pass / No Pass option.
- The Pass / No Pass option is:
- Written in the course syllabus
- Clearly communicated to students and families
- Chosen by a student as a grading option within the timeline mentioned above.
- To receive a “Pass”, a student must meet minimum course requirements that would earn a credit in the course. A “No Pass” is given to a student who does not meet minimum course requirements to earn credit. See specific course grading criteria for more information.
- GPA: Neither a Pass or a No Pass grade is calculated in the student's GPA.
- A Non-Standard Diploma exception may be made by the IEP team for a student on an IEP.
NO GRADE (NG)
- When a student enrolls in the school more than halfway through a grading period, with no transfer grades, and there is insufficient time to assess the student prior to the end of the grading period, a “No Grade (NG)” may be given. This option requires prior administrator approval.
DROPPING A CLASS
- It is the role of teachers and counselors to support improved performance rather than to counsel students to drop a class. If a student has truly been misplaced in a class, it is appropriate to assist them in changing to a more appropriate level course.
- Students may withdraw from a class within the first 15 school days of the semester (date set by district) without penalty or notation on the transcript. Both the family and the teacher / counselor (or administrator) must approve the change and approval must be documented on the standard district form.
- After the withdrawal period has expired, students shall NOT be allowed to drop a class without a transcript notation of “WF” (Withdraw / Fail) as the final grade UNLESS the building administrator grants an exception based on extreme and / or extenuating, documented circumstances . A level change within the same subject (ie a change from calculus into pre-calculus) would not be subject to this practice. A building administrator must sign all approved requests.
GUIDELINES FOR USING NOTATIONS: WF / WN / WX
After the 15-day period for dropping a class has passed, a student will receive one of the
following notations on their transcript if he / she drops a class:
- Withdraw Fail ( WF ): Student withdraws and is not passing the course at the time of withdrawal or the student withdraws from a course after the 15-day withdrawal period.
- A “WF” is factored into the student's GPA.
- Withdraw No Pass ( WN ): Student withdraws in a Pass / No Pass system and is not passing the course at the time of withdrawal.
- A “WN” is not factored into the student's GPA.
- Withdraw No Grade ( WX ): A WX notation is given only in rare and unusual circumstances, (ie, those which are out of the control of the student such as extended illness, death of a family member, etc.) and must be approved by the building administrator. In each extenuating circumstance, written documentation such as grades, attendance, evidence of extenuating circumstances, and record of a parent / teacher / counselor / student / administrator meeting will be kept on file. A “WX” is not factored into the student's GPA.
- A student may receive credit for a course only once unless it is designated a multi-semester course. Repeated courses taken to pass a course or improve a grade are recorded on the transcript with a notation of "R" with the credit for the lower grade deleted . The original course must remain noted on the transcript even though it will no longer be factored into the GPA.
- A grade change may be made within a year of the entry of the original grade and must be accompanied by written documentation including the building administrator's signature . The documentation will go directly to the data clerk for a grade change.
- Only an administrator / designee may enter a grade change into the Student Information System.
- For protection of counselors and teachers, no counselor or teacher should have access to Synergy to make grade changes on their own.
The Portland Association of Teachers' contract with the district provides that should a teacher make a mistake in giving a grade to a student, the teacher's grade book becomes the reference point and only that teacher can make a change of grade. If the teacher is retired, and the grade book indicates that an error has been made, every effort will be made to contact the teacher to verify the grade. If the teacher cannot be contacted, the principal may authorize a change of grade.
If a student receives an 'NP' or 'F' and makes an individual contract with a teacher to change that grade by completing certain projects / assignments, upon completion of the contract, the involved teacher will submit a 'change of grade form' to the data clerk indicating what class and grade is to be changed.
In the case of a senior who plans to graduate, teachers are obligated to give previous notice prior to giving a final 'F'. Specifically, a progress report in May 'F' and a Senior Failure list 'F' (given two days after seniors' last day) would be expected if a final 'F' is coming. If no warning is given, the counselor will consult with the principal about whether or not there should be a change of grade.
Weighted Grades, Ranking and GPA
AP courses are weighted in the calculation for weighted GPA and class ranking on the transcript. This means that an "A" in an AP course earns a 5 in the weighted GPA. The grades are weighted only in the calculation of weighted class ranking and weighted GPA, and not on the report card. Both weighted and unweighted calculations are recorded on the transcript. Valedictorian recognition is determined using the unweighted cumulative GPA.
- Any student registering at a PPS high school with previous high school credits should provide an official / unofficial transcript from that accredited high school to be enrolled accurately. If the student is enrolling from another US high school, official transcripts must be sent directly to the PPS school.
- If a student has no transcript or has not attended an accredited school, they may be enrolled but must meet PPS graduation requirements in order to graduate.
- Parents / guardians will be asked to provide information so that an official transcript may be obtained from the previous school.
- Counselors will compile a PPS transcript based on this documentation.
- International transcripts may be forwarded to the District Registrar for verification and translation.
- It is the counselor's responsibility to review transcripts for the following:
- Reviewing progress towards graduation
- For accurate GPA calculation, grade reporting
- To support post secondary planning
- AP, Honors (H), and IB courses should be designated in the course title. Advanced courses may also be designated in the title.
- Pre-ninth grade high school credit may be earned as outlined in PPS Board Policy 6.10.100-P and administered in accordance with 6.10.110-AD Parents or students entering high school with credits already earned must request to have the credit and grade removed from their transcript prior to the end of the student's first semester of high school, if they decide to do so.
- Religion classes: If a student transfers to a PPS school from a faith-based school, or a foreign country where religion is taught as part of their curriculum, students will not be given credit for their religious coursework. Students MAY be given credit for religious studies that are based on history and do not promote one ideology. In this case, students may be asked to provide a copy of the course syllabus to assure the class meets the credit criteria.
- Home school: Unless a 'home school' program is accredited, and the PPS high school receives an official transcript, home school coursework will not count toward PPS high school graduation requirements. Students may elect to take credit by exam courses from an accredited institution (for a fee) to receive credit on their PPS transcript when available.
- Proficiency: It is possible to note a student's proficiency in a subject area without the student earning credit. Proficiency must be certified by a licensed instructor at an accredited institution. It is also possible to earn credit by showing proficiency in a specified curriculum area. The student must demonstrate the required knowledge of the subject by meeting the required standards of the course as validated and recorded by a licensed instructor or other district designee.
CERTIFICATION OF COURSES
The school administration is annually responsible to verify and update the school's official approved course list for the NCAA .