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Standards-Based Report Cards

A Parent’s Guide to Standards-Based Reporting

The Olentangy Local School District is committed to fulfilling our district mission of facilitating maximum learning for every student. At the elementary level, part of fulfilling this mission includes using standards-based report cards to provide students and parents specific, timely and actionable feedback.

What are standards?

Standards are statements about what students know and should be able to do within each content area at each grade level. Decisions about how to teach students, in what order to teach content, and what materials to use are made at the district- and building-level. For more information about Ohio’s Learning Standards, view the Ohio Department of Education's Learning in Ohio webpage.

What is a standards-based report card?

A standards-based report card is designed to provide accurate information about student performance in meeting the standard. In other words, rather than focusing on a percentage or number of points obtained, standards-based reporting focuses on student understanding or competency. With standards-based reporting, the conversation shifts from “What is my child’s score?” to “What is my child able to do?” While student work habits are important skills, these skills are reported separately. Marks for the standard are intended to reflect student performance in meeting the standard.

Why do we use performance levels for the standards instead of letter grades?

The learning progressions of children are too complex to be reduced to a simple letter grade. Our standards-based reporting system is designed to provide specific and timely information about the specific skills students are progressing towards mastering.

The performance levels we use to report student performance are:

4:  Met end of year grade level standards and may be ready to work at greater depth

3:  Expected progress toward meeting end of year grade level standards

2:  Less than expected progress toward meeting end of year grade level standards with increased support

1:  Little to no progress toward meeting end of year grade level standards with extensive support

Why are there blank spaces on the report card?

With standards-based report cards, we assign a performance level once students have had the opportunity to show mastery of the standards.  For this reason, you may see many blanks on the report card at the beginning of the year.  A standard is not reported until it has been taught and assessed.  Additionally, our instructional focus is on a guaranteed and viable curriculum.  In other words, we allocate our time to focus on the most important concepts a student needs to master.  This why you will see some standards reported over multiple quarters and other standards only reported once. 

How is a performance level determined?

Performance levels represent what a student is able to do in relation to the year-end goals. Performance levels are based on academic achievement. Students are provided multiple opportunities to practice content and skills reflecting instruction the teacher has provided. After providing these opportunities, teachers gather evidence of mastery. Evidence may include observations, classroom assignments, tests, small group work, or a one-on-one activity.

Performance Level Descriptors