Our Mission: Salem Middle School is a collaborative community that ensures high student achievement and values the unique needs of every learner.
Grading: Grades students receive from teachers at Salem Middle School are consistent, accurate, meaningful and supportive of learning.
Rationale: A team committed to ensuring high student achievement and valuing the unique needs of each learner provides all students with a strong, fundamental education focused on the standards defined by the North Carolina Standard Course of Study (NCSCOS) for each curriculum. Such a team also recognizes and respects the changing nature of the learning and work environment in the 21st Century.
Each PLT (Professional Learning Team) will:
1. Report achievement and work behaviors
2. Assess students frequently to guide instruction, re-teaching, and remediation
- Use PowerSchool comments when possible to identify reasons for missing grades.
- Grades should not be given for non-academic work or behaviors unless they are specifically a part of the curriculum such as in Band, PE, CA, etc.
- PLTs will determine if homework is graded. Homework cannot count for more than 10% of a student’s overall grade. Homework that is assigned for practice should not be graded.
- SMS Homework policy will be followed by every PLT.
- Late work: every effort should be made to encourage students to complete their assignments. Missing assignments should be clearly labeled in PowerSchool. Students should be assigned to Spartan Time or ASD until the assignment is completed. If a student develops a pattern of not completing work on time, a referral to the Intervention Team should be made.
- PLTs should share common grading categories and percentages for each category.
- PLTs should have a common number of grades for the major assessment category.
- PLTs should have a common re-teaching and remediation plan for their students.
- Students who do not complete work to where it is causing them to fail, should be referred to the Intervention Team (academic referral).
3. Design a system for immediate remediation using student assessment data
- If a student scores below a 70 (new grading scale) on any major assessment, they should be given the opportunity to re-take the assessment in order to demonstrate mastery. A major assessment can be tests, major essays, projects, etc.
- In order to be eligible for a re-take, PLTs may determine the common criteria for eligibility. These criteria may include all or some of the following:
- An excused absence on the day the assessment is being given or is due
- All homework completed during the unit that was being assessed
- Test corrections completed prior to re-taking the assessment
- A pre-determined number of Spartan Time sessions attended in order to get remediation support prior to re-taking the assessment
- The re-take must be completed in an agreed upon time frame between student and teacher (preferably before the next unit assessment)
- Some form of parent notification (decided on by PLT) must take place when a re-take is being given
- If a student is consistently needing to re-take assessments, an academic referral should be submitted
4. Provide student achievement feedback through a combination of formative and summative assessments
5. Assess specific learning goals and standards of the NCSCOS
6. When grading group work, rubrics should be used to assess individuals fairly and equitably
7. Use exemplars and rubrics to standardize performance expectations when working with subjective assignments
8. Clarify to students how grades are determined, involving them in all phases of assessment throughout the year
- Teachers are asked to add grades to the Gradebook within five days of turning back the assignment to students
- Teachers will print interim reports for students to take home at the five-week mark of each quarter