THE GRADING SYSTEM - Swampscott High School

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THE GRADING SYSTEM

The grading procedures at Swampscott High School represent more than just the amassing of figures. Other factors enter into the process as well. Although students are graded primarily on the basis of achievement, factors such as attitude, class participation, completion of assignments, effort, and a willingness to cooperate and assume leadership responsibilities enter into the determination of a grade.

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Teachers will input numerical grades.

The report card and transcript continue to show letter grades.

Honor roll is determined based upon the calculation of the student’s Unweighted

GPA at the end of each marking term.

Because evaluation criteria may vary among departments, teachers will present to their students, at the beginning of the course, criteria against which they will be measured.

Grade Equivalents

A+ = 97-99

B+ = 87-89

C+ = 77-79

D+ = 67-69

F = 0-59

A = 93-96

B = 83-86

C = 73-76

D = 63-66

A- = 90-92

B- = 80-82

C- = 70-72

D- = 60-62

Report Cards

Report cards are distributed to students in school three times a year, in November,

February, and April. The final report card is mailed home in June. At the midpoint of each term, progress reports are mailed to the parents of students whose achievement is below their capabilities.

Pass/Fail Option Policy

It is recommended that in extraordinary circumstances, and subject to the approval of the

High School Principal, provision be made for an alternate grading system for students with special educational needs: a student shall be given a Pass/Fail grade in a specified course for a specified period when (a) his educational plan calls for it and he assents, or (b) the teacher, the guidance department, and administration agree that one or more of the following conditions constitute a learning situation of extraordinary difficulty for that student to the extent that the actual grade attained is not an accurate reflection of the student’s performance: his native language is not English, he has had an extended absence from school, or he has transferred into the school after the beginning of the school year. The P/F grade shall appear on both his report card and his transcript.

A student who receives not more than two P/F course grades in an academic year shall be assigned a rank-in-class based on the courses in which he receives standard letter grades.

If a student receives more than two P/F course grades in an academic year, none of his grades for that year shall be included in the computation of his rank-in-class.

POLICY ON RANKING IN CLASS

Swampscott High School reports both a Weighted and Unweighted Grade Point Average and

Rank-in-Class for the purpose of college admissions, scholarship competition, and other purposes where this information is of importance to our students.

For students not enrolled in any "0" level, Honors, or AP courses, their weighted and unweighted G.P.A.'s are identical.

The weighted ranking system applies an additional ten (10) percent factor to grades received by students in those courses which we designate as Honors (H) or Advanced

Placement (AP)

Courses in our Program of Studies. These are courses whose third digit is usually (but not always) "0". All other courses, "l's and 2's" are treated equally. In addition, all Career

Technology Education and

Fine Arts Courses continue to be included in the calculation of Grade Point Average and

Rank-in-Class and are treated the same as "1 and 2" level courses.

The purpose of this ranking policy is to place our students on a more level "playing field" when competing with similar students from other high schools, the majority of which use a weighted ranking system. Internally (i.e. within Swampscott High School) we continue to use the unweighted G.P.A. for the purpose of determining Honor Roll eligibility,

National Honor Society eligibility, and Honor Graduate determination.

Rank-in-Class will be calculated at the end of each school year, the middle of the junior year, at the end of the junior year, and each marking term of the senior year.

DEGREES OF DIFFICULTY

SHS is a comprehensive college preparatory high school. To meet the needs of our diverse student body, courses are offered at different degrees of difficulty in a wide variety of subjects. The criteria which determine course difficulty include: the degree of in-depth examination of subject matter, critical thinking skills, background knowledge, initiative and independent study. Advanced Placement courses are taught at the college level. Students may earn college credit in these courses depending on their level of achievement on Advanced Placement tests.

All courses are open to all students with the ability, interest, and commitment to do the necessary work. Parents may appeal a teacher’s course recommendation to the appropriate administrator. A student’s retention in any course depends upon his/her performance in the course.

Proper selection of a course of study is a matter of close individual attention, which requires cooperation among the student, current academic teachers, parents and the guidance staff.

COURSE SELECTION

As each student proceeds through high school, his plans may change because of factors such as the establishment of new goals, his level of achievement in courses, changing conditions at home, or other reasons, which would suggest a re-designing of a program. Parents should follow the progress of their children and work closely with school personnel to assure maximum growth and development of their children in preparation for the years beyond high school.

All students must elect the equivalent of six (6) full-time credit bearing courses as a minimum each semester and must earn passing grades in at least the equivalent of five (5) courses (25 credits) each year to be promoted and graduated.

In the spring of each year, the course selections for the following year begins

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All freshmen, sophomores, and juniors are provided with information to assist them in selecting their courses for the next year. Students must make their selections with the help of current classroom teachers and guidance counselors.

GUIDANCE SERVICES

MS. MEREDITH REARDON – Director of Guidance

MS. JUDITH T. PRESSLER – Guidance Counselor

MS. ANNA SKILLINGS – Guidance Counselor

MR. THOMAS HEALEY - Adjustment Counselor

MRS. PHYLLIS YORK - Secretary

Phone: (781) 596-8840 FAX: (781) 592-6850

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