Grading Task Force Decisions
Third Nine Weeks
The end of the third nine weeks will be March 13, 2020.
Any student who still owes work for the third nine weeks is able to make up that work. If the work cannot be completed remotely (for example, a swim test or a robot demonstration), then the student will be exempt. Students are permitted to make up assignments from April 23, 2020 through May 8, 2020. The deadline to complete make-up work is May 8, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. It is the teacher’s discretion to provide grades for any exempt work. Grades for exempt work shall not harm a student’s grade.
Final grades will be calculated as a trimester, factoring the first, second, and third nine weeks only. Class rank will be calculated based on the trimester.
Fourth Nine Weeks
The fourth nine weeks will be a Pass / Fail letter grade. There will be no percentages associated with Pass / Fail.
The Pass / Fail letter grade will be based on the child putting forth an “honest effort.” An “honest effort” can be demonstrated in a variety of ways: through Google Classroom, returning an assignment via email, connecting with the teacher via a phone call, or completing assignments via USB. All teachers will communicate with their students what they define as “honest effort.”
If a child is at risk of earning an “F” for the fourth nine weeks, then s/he will be contacted by the teacher, principal, and school counselor to discuss the expectations in order to achieve a “P.” A conference, either by phone or web, is required prior to assigning an “F” for a child in the fourth nine weeks. If the two parties are unable to meet, then the child is awarded a “P.”
The Grading Task Force highly encourages all staff members to demonstrate empathy and profound flexibility in his/her definition of “honest effort.”
Teachers are permitted to use the fourth nine weeks to allow bonus points or extra credit to improve a child’s final grade. Bonus points or extra credit may not harm a student’s grade, only provide opportunity for improvement. If bonus points or extra credit are utilized, the teacher is expected to ensure equity of access. This means that children without access to the Internet or technology shall have equitable opportunity for extra credit and shall not be harmed due to access to technology.
Ultimately, it is the final decision of the teacher in assigning grades.
Frequently Asked Questions
What specifically constitutes a Pass/Fail? Ultimately, it is the final decision of the teacher in assigning grades.
What happens if my child fails the fourth nine weeks but passes the first three nine weeks? Your child’s grade will be calculated based on the first three nine weeks. The fourth nine weeks “F” will be noted on the report card.
What happens if my child passes the fourth nine weeks but failed the first three nine weeks? Your child’s grade will be calculated based on the first three nine weeks. The fourth nine weeks “P” will be noted on the report card. We encourage your child to begin credit recovery online as soon as possible via our FOLA program.
What happens if a child fails multiple nine weeks prior to Covid-19? The child’s grade will be calculated based on the first three nine weeks. A failing grade in one of the three nine weeks could harm a child’s ability to pass the course.
If my child’s class is a three hour daily program, how will 1 attempt/1 assignment per week be justified? Connellsville Area School District / Connellsville Area Career and Technical Center’s Continuity of Education Plan is approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and teachers are required to comply with the plan.
If my child has not/will not succeed in the distance learning due to COVID-19, but does succeed in a brick and mortar, will my child still be promoted to the next grade? Yes, your child will be promoted to the next grade if s/he averaged a passing grade during the first three nine weeks of the 2019-2020 school year.
How will a “Pass/Fail” affect my child’s chances of being accepted into college? Your child’s final grade is calculated based on the first three nine weeks. The fourth nine weeks “P or F” will be noted on the transcripts. The “Pass / Fail” will not affect grade point average (G.P.A.). A note will indicate on the transcript the “P / F” was due to COVID-19 and post-secondary institutions are providing flexibility regarding the second semester of the 2019-2020 school year.
Will the 4th nine weeks (COVID-19 period) benefit the final trimester grade or an individual term? Can we use the fourth nine week grading period as an opportunity to adjust/improve previous grading periods? Yes, teachers are permitted to use the fourth nine weeks to allow bonus points or extra credit to improve a child’s final grade. Bonus points or extra credit may not harm a student’s grade, only provide opportunity for improvement. If bonus points or extra credit are utilized, the teacher is expected to ensure equity of access. This means that children without access to the Internet or technology shall have equitable opportunity for extra credit and shall not be harmed due to access to technology.
How much can a “Pass” for the fourth nine weeks improve a final grade for that subject? Ultimately, it is the final decision of the teacher in assigning grades.
What will we do if ALMA has limitations with using a Pass/Fail grade in the fourth nine weeks? Connellsville Area School District is engaging in discussions with Alma in order to rectify the changes. This may delay distribution of report cards for underclassmen, but we ultimately want to ensure that we do what is best for children despite technical limitations.
My child heard this doesn’t count and said there’s no reason to work. I don’t feel like having this battle with him if it doesn’t matter anyway. If the 4th nine weeks does not count, why should my child and I do this work? We believe in lifelong learning and there are many experiences in life where we work despite receiving any tangible reward. Provided your child makes an “honest effort”, s/he will pass the 4th 9 weeks. Failure to do so may result in an “F”. A “P or F” will be included on the child’s report card.
What if my child cannot complete assignments via USB because the assignments are not Google compatible? Please contact your support professional or the teacher. All assignments are to be compatible despite access to the Internet.
How will grading affect FOLA? FOLA grades will follow the Connellsville Area School District policies and procedures.
Who do I contact if I have additional questions? Please contact your child’s school in order to be connected with the building principal or school counselor to answer any additional questions.
Thank you to those who dedicated extra hours in order to develop the grading procedures for Connellsville Area School District:
Final approval of the grading decisions are subject to Alma capability and approval by the Board of School Directors, per policies # 212 and # 214.