At City Knoll Middle School a fair grading policy accurately reflects each student’s best effort achievement based on NYS Common Core Learning Standards. Grades are provided to students and families as periodic assessments of student progress, performance and achievement within a subject area. Students are supported by teachers throughout the learning process through scaffolded instruction, tiered activities, and student choice to achieve academic success. Ongoing feedback is provided to students through a variety of methods including conferencing, rubric scores, comments on writing assignment, and the use of checklists. Grades are based on objective criteria that include but are not limited to:
Assessments (formal and informal) Projects
Homework Laboratory Reports
Class participation Presentations
Research and reports Performance Tasks
Student self-assessments and evaluations
Absence and excessive lateness may contribute to lower grades or failure.
City Knoll Middle School uses the following framework for determining content area grades:
**Each category must have a minimum of 3 - 4 pieces each marking period.*
Summative Assessments: (45%)
All assessments are aligned with the NYS Common Core Learning Standards and are returned to students with constructive feedback and/or reflective questions to guide students in improving their understanding. The frequency and specific percentage value of examinations are established by each content area and rubrics for all students.
Performance Assessments: (40 %)
Quizzes, short projects/presentations, classroom and homework assignments are an essential way for teachers to gauge students’ understanding of materials and allow the teacher to inform instruction. Formative assessments prepare students for the next day’s lesson, reinforce former lessons taught, and develop critical thinking skills.
Class Participation and Work Habits: (10 %)
Classroom participation is determined by the quality and frequency of performance in class activities, including: written and oral assignments, presentations, as well as participation in group and individual activities, exercises, discussions, and projects in the class. Teachers utilize a rubric for measuring class participation and work habits.
Homework: (5 %)
Homework plays an important role in the development of responsibility and good study habits. Homework enables students to deepen their understanding of skills and concepts introduced in class, build independent learning skills, and prepare for the rigors of high school. Homework also provides opportunities for students to begin to develop the understanding that learning continues to take place outside of the school day.
The purpose of homework is to reinforce, extend, and enrich the instruction experience. Homework provides opportunities for students to utilize separately learned skills and concepts and integrate them in the completion of a project or interdisciplinary assignment. Homework assignments may also be designed to introduce or help students become familiar with material to be utilized in the instructional setting. Teachers use homework as one way to assess student understanding and to inform their practice in the classroom.
Chancellor’s Regulations require a minimum of one to two hours of homework daily for middle school students. All students are expected to read every day for at least sixty minutes after school. Homework, like classwork, should be done thoroughly, neatly, and carefully. Individual content area teachers should assign approximately 15 - 20 minutes of homework each night, and should have a consistent system of communicating homework assignments with students and parents as well as checking homework the following day. Homework and other assignments should be posted in the Skedula platform in a timely fashion. Each grade team should determine a late homework policy, i.e. partial credit (25%) for each week late. Homework is evaluated according to a rubric established by the teacher or teacher(s).
Academic Intervention Services:
Support services are available to students during the school day through AIS. Study Lab, ELA & Math Interventions, and Book Clubs are provided after-school. Students at-risk of failing are encouraged to attend tutoring sessions and office hours offered by content area teachers. In Addition, our Saturday School Program is open to all students and provides students with support in English Language Arts and Mathematics in preparation for the New York State ELA and Mathematics State Assessments.
Opportunities to Discuss Student Progress:
Parent Teacher Conferences Conferences will take place twice a year (fall and spring). Additionally, Monday’s Parent Engagement time is used by teachers, counselors, and administrators to contact and meet with families to discuss student’s progress.
Promotion criteria is determined using multiple measures of student performance throughout the course of the school year, which includes content area coursework and standardized New York State exams in English language arts and math. If a student does not meet promotion standards for the grade, the family will get a letter recommending summer school attendance. (See Chancellor’s Regulation A-501.)
CKMS utilizes an online grading system called Pupil Path, which is shared with families through written communication that includes instructions on how to access student progress, assignments, and performance. Workshops are also provided so that families and students can access information. This allows our students and families to access grades, assignments, and missing work. Information is updated by teachers on a weekly basis. For parent and student access to Pupil Path, please reach out to our guidance office, or the parent coordinator.