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AUSD Board Approves Grading Guidelines for This ‘Atypical’ School Year

Photo by David Muñoz.


Alhambra , CA

With the complex realities of school closures and distance learning in mind, the Alhambra Unified School District’s governing board has adopted grading guidelines to be used during the second semester of the 2019-2020 academic year.

The proposed guidelines were presented to the board at its teleconference meeting Tuesday night by Janet Lees, the assistant superintendent of educational services and Pat Mahony, assistant superintendent of student employee welfare. The Power Point presentation they used offered some methodology on how the grading recommendations were developed. A link to that PowerPoint may be found here.

A few of the main takeaways, as outlined in the district’s Resolution No. 19-20-21 concerning Grading During Emergency School Closure, follow:

For Elementary School Students:

  • The second trimester grades are the final grades assigned for academic progress and effort. Teachers will not assign Third Trimester grades or marks for behavior or effort, but will provide positive and supportive feedback on the students’ performance over the course of the year, including progress during Distance Learning via the comments section on the report card.

For High School Grades:

  • Participation and work completed during Distance Learning during the fourth quarter of 2020 can only improve a student’s grade. No student can earn a grade lower than the grade earned at the time of school closure (in March).
  • Students who have not participated in Distance Learning due to circumstances beyond their control shall not be penalized.
  • Teachers shall issue final Second Semester grades that are the same or higher than the grades at the time of the school closure.
  • Second semester and  Summer 2020 grades will not be included in overall GPA for internal awards and recognitions.

The full text of the resolution, which offers more details on the grading and assessment scenarios including those for middle grades along with a letter from AUSD Superintendent Denise R. Jaramillo notifying parents of the board’s decision, may be found here.

Jaramillo notes in her letter that,  “As with anything new, there are likely to be questions regarding this temporary grading system,” and she urges students and parents to consult with teachers, counselors or school principals for necessary clarifications.”

There is “just over one month left in this very atypical school year,” Jaramillo wrote, wishing everyone “the very best as you continue in distance learning.”

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