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Well, the day has finally come. Or almost come anyway. The day I must assign the little cherubs a mark. To help them sort through our lists of outcomes, I’ve agreed to give the students a summative unit “mark” (which they could easily do themselves, but have a hard time picking out the more important outcomes from the less important ones.) This also will save paper for our last report card since this thing is a freaking encyclopedia. However, I’m still not giving a number grade. The students need to arrive at our exit inteviews with that in mind, and be prepared to defend their choice of grade using evidence from throughout the year.
That being said, they would like “brackets” of the mark range for each of our scale. My gut tells me to give them the following, even though it’s wonky. So, I’ll explain it all and you pretend you’re my students and provide some feedback please
Initially I thought this bracket should be from 85-100%, but in order to have earned an exceeding students didn’t just have to do really well on a particular outcome, they actually had to extend their learning past the curricular expectations for grade 9 in some way. Since I only awarded exceedings in this way during the year, it makes sense to me that this is such a narrow bracket.
Meeting was mastery of a curricular outcome, typically shown on more than one assessment.
Beginning to Meet 40-60%
This is my oddest bracket by far as it straddles that magical 50% low achievers strive for. I’m really not comfortable saying that beginning is 50-75 though, as by the standards I was holding my students to all year was that beginning meant additional work and a reassessment were necessary. Beginning = Not meeting = keep working. The only reason (in my mind) that I have a distinction between Beginning and Not Meeting is so students can know if they are on the right track or totally out to lunch. I mostly hope they know this without me pointing it out, but their parents might not so to me this is a helpful distinction.
Not Meeting <50%
The conversation about the shades of grey of Not Meeting (just how badly am I failing?) seems like a conversation for another place and time. The very few students I have in this boat will be repeating the course, end of story. I’m not clear on what the difference between 15% or 38% in this instance is.
Now, this isn’t to say I don’t think students won’t end up with marks between 60-75%, but I think these happen from a combination of Beginnings and Meetings across our different areas of study. Am I insane? Do let me know!