Standards Based Grading

For the past several months we have had a group at school that has been looking standards based grading (SBG).  For the past few months we have been reading a book about the subject and then discussing what we learned.  Sometimes I think that I have more questions now that I know more about SBG.  Like will this get kids to push themselves or will they settle for a proficiency and no longer care about doing the best or learning more?  Is there a difference between SBG and Content? For example in ELA you may be able to cite explicit examples of something, but does that mean you don’t need to learn the content for American Literature or British Literature etc.? Is proficient an A or should it be a B so that exemplary can be an A?

Yes, I do believe that SBG will give a better picture of what the student can and can’t do.  But we also need to find a way to grade those employability skills! So much to continue discussing and come up with answers for.

4 thoughts on “Standards Based Grading

  1. Think long and hard about this. I know that many people oppose this system because they believe it takes away incentive for students.


  2. I am interested in your thoughts. Our district decided (based on a committee of 12, but we know what that means) that Standard Based Grading is what we are doing. It started on the first day of this last trimester. The teachers know they can’t give extra credit but that is about it. They will find out more at a PD day on the 25 of April. After that parents will be invited to meetings. I am greatly opposed to our jumping in with both feet — SBG across the board– with little more than someone went to a conference and liked the idea. As a parent I am vehemently opposed. Younger is smart and a good student but he will be a Junior in the fall and when teachers are trying to figure out what administration wants who knows how that will affect grades. And despite what the powers that be say, GRADES DO MATTER when you are applying to college. Hubby is on this band wagon with me. I would love to hear from anyone who is doing this, has been doing it for a while, plans on keeping it, and actually loves it. Keep us updated on your journey.


  3. I wonder why you feel “employable skills” need to graded. Hopefully there is a narrative sectIon where you can write about those things. I think intrinsic motivation can be better instilled with SBG and mastery is not as subjective to how a teacher chooses to weigh things. (One more perspective.)


  4. And how about grading based on growth? I always wonder what would happen if we met each student where they were and then challenged them to grow from there. Just because you are an “A” student, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t work as hard at your craft as the “C” student.


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