Admin alters grading policy

New practices to take place for 2022-2023 school year

Jeanne Mardegan, News Editor, Website Editor

On July 12, principal Jennifer Tyrrell sent an email to LT students and families in regards to the most up-to-date grading policy changes that were to take place for the 2022 fall semester. The three major changes occur in coursework, retakes, and final exams.

As opposed to the previous school year when only summative assessments counted for a student’s overall grade, there is now a 90-10 split between summative and formative work submitted, meaning 10% of a student’s grade comes from work such as in-class assignments and homework, Tyrrell said in the July email. In accordance with the alterations, teacher teams can choose how many retakes a student is allowed, and there are now four ways a teacher can administer a final exam. These options include: a cumulative test, summative unit test, presentation, or a retake of a previous exam.

“All along, what we’re trying to do is strike a balance between wanting to make sure that the grade is measuring what students have actually learned as opposed to grading behaviors, while also incentivising doing the work,” Director of Curriculum and Instruction Scott Eggerding said. These measures are now in place due to feedback from students, parents, and focus groups. In order for a policy like this to take place, different teams within the district, including division chairs, meet to discuss the input received from community members. Next, a policy change is drafted to be reviewed by the Grading Implementation team. It is then shared with the Central Leadership team and final decisions are made before being presented to the Board of Education.

“Grading has different purposes,” Eggerding said. “I just want to make sure that when a grade says ‘A’ or ‘B,’ it means a student has learned [the material]. We are in a much better place than we were six years ago. There was a time when every teacher in a course graded differently.”

Students have already begun to see the effects of the 90-10 composite grade, Gabriella Luburic ‘23 said. In completing all her homework prior to her summative assessment, Luburic saw a grade that positively affected her learning.

“Personally, [the grading changes] will help me because I do my homework,” Luburic said. “But, I think people still won’t do their homework because we’re used to it [not affecting our grades].”

However, even in completing homework assignments, a student’s grade can still be lowered by other factors despite doing well on a unit test, Malia Fink ‘23 said.

“I only got [a half point] off on the quiz and the test, but my grade in the gradebook is lower than the grade of my test because of the 10%, even though I got the same amount of points off,” Fink said. “I wish they would go back to the [previous] grading system because I felt everything was more balanced.”