Jessamine County: where all report cards are standards-based
Kentucky School Advocate
By Madelynn Coldiron
“What better way to know if students are college ready or even career ready than really looking at ‘Do they truly know?’ We can’t have grades that are diluted,” she said, “because the worst thing that can happen is a student gets to college and has gotten A’s all the way through high school because they were a conscientious student who turned in their work on time and took advantage of extra credit opportunities; and therefore they skated all the way through with a 4.0 to get to college or out into the work force and then realize, ‘I don’t really know this stuff, because my teacher told me I got an A, but really my content-level knowledge was a C-minus.’”
The high school has developed a conversion system to translate its numerical scale to letter grades to accommodate college transcripts.
East Jessamine High also has policies outlining how students are to be helped if they fall short of mastering all the standards. “They don’t have to retake the entire exam, but if they miss a particular standard, they can go back and do remediation in that particular standard and retake that particular section of the test,” Reynolds explained.
The crux of standards-based grading is not punitive, she added, but based on the philosophy that “you don’t know it yet.”