Grading and Reporting for Educational Equity
The purpose of a grading system is to give feedback to students so they can take charge of their learning and to provide information to all who support these students—teachers, special educators, parents, and others. The purpose of a reporting system is to communicate the students’ achievement to families, post-secondary institutions, and employers. These systems must, above all, communicate clear information about the skills a student has mastered or the areas where they need more support or practice. When schools use grades to reward or punish students, or to sort students into levels, imbalances in power and privilege will be magnified and the purposes of the grading and reporting systems will not be achieved. The tools and guidance below is intended to highlight the central practices that schools can use to ensure that their grading and reporting systems help them build a nurturing, equitable, creative, and dynamic culture of learning.
The tools in this section can be used by school communities to reflect on their current practices and to develop more equitable grading and reporting systems.