At both the elementary and middle campuses, there is additional support available so that all students have equal opportunities for success in the classroom. Teachers at all grade levels utilize a variety of tools to assess student academic performance.

Comprehensive Academic Support and Student Services

Academic Assistance

At both the elementary and middle campuses, there is additional support for students exhibiting academic difficulties. In grades K-5, academic assistance teachers in reading and math provide daily personalized and small group instruction to students who have demonstrated a need for targeted interventions to improve their skills. In grades 6-8, there is a daily 30-minute academic growth period that provides each student with consistent and targeted instruction designed to foster growth in his/her academic skills personalized to his/her needs and interests. As well, each teacher offers a voluntary tutorial time for students, either before or after school, at least one day each week.

Student Support Team (SST)

Using the Response to Intervention approach to provide all students with the level and types of supports and interventions appropriate to their needs, ANCS sometimes forms a Student Support Team (SST) for certain students with exhibited learning needs that are not being addressed by regular classroom interventions. The SST is a problem-solving process that helps to identify struggling learners and assess the effectiveness of various interventions for them. The members of a student’s SST (which includes teachers and parents/guardians) work together to develop individual plans for the student.

Special Education

For students with identified learning disabilities, the special education program at ANCS works with students and families to meet students’ individual needs by accommodating and/or modifying curriculum, instruction, and/or assessment. A K-8 Special Education Coordinator works with a team of special education teachers at both the elementary and middle campus to oversee the services provided to students with Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) so that students make progress towards their goals. As much as is appropriate, students with identified disabilities are included in classes with their peers, with classroom teachers working in consultation with special education teachers and/or with students working directly with special education teachers. A broad spectrum of special education services are made available to support the specific learning needs of students with IEPs; however, there are instances when, based on the needs of the student, a more appropriate placement for a student may be at another APS school with programs designed to meet the needs of students with certain types of disabilities.

Counseling and Psychological Support

ANCS has school counselors at each campus as well as a school psychologist to work with students both in one-on-one and group settings to address social and emotional issues.


ANCS teachers at all grade levels utilize a variety of tools to assess student academic performance including:

  • Diagnostic assessments in the first weeks of school
  • Informal and formal assessments from class (including unit-ending performance tasks)
  • Universal screeners
  • Student portfolios
  • Standardized tests, such as the Georgia Milestones and Measures of Academic Progress (MAP)

Portfolios and Exhibitions

ANCS uses student portfolios and public exhibitions of them as a way to gather a wider array of information about student learning and growth.

One of the more unique features of students assessment at ANCS is the use of portfolios and exhibitions. ANCS uses student portfolios and public exhibitions as a way to gather a wider array of information about student learning and growth. This system of assessment is tailored appropriately to match developmental and academic performance expectations at each grade level.

In grades K-5, students maintain one portfolio of their work for presentation during a “portfolio share” at the end of the schools year, while teachers work with students to develop another that serves as a “pass along” assessment tool from grade to grade.

In grades 6-8, the use of portfolios and exhibitions widens as students must demonstrate their competency in essential skills via specific performance areas. At the end of the school year, each student leads a public exhibition of his or her portfolio. Public exhibition of student work is intended not only to give each student a goal to reach for during the school year, it is also a way to engage the wider community in the learning process at ANCS. Public exhibition is a way to build awareness of the value of each student’s efforts and the critical thinking skills that guided the student’s work. The successful completion of the portfolio and exhibition is one of the criteria used in determining promotion from one grade level to the next in grades 6-8.

Reporting of Student Progress

While teachers use data from student assessments daily, several reporting structures exist at ANCS to afford students and families frequent opportunity to reflect upon student performance information in order to grow as learners. These structures include:

  • Communication Folders (grades K-5): Communication folders are sent home to parents containing updates on student performance and classroom initiatives, as well as home enrichment materials.
  • Advisor Progress Reports (grades 6-8) : Approximately halfway through each semester, each student receives a progress report from his or her advisor. These reports give feedback (both numerical and narrative) on a student’s performance on the Commitment to Guiding Principles for each class with a summary of strengths and weaknesses provided by the advisor.
  • Semester Progress Reports: Twice a year in January and May, students and families in all grades receive formal report cards. The report cards provides academic and related information on a student so that support and attention may be enhanced, maintained, or altered to help the student achieve maximum growth and learning. These reports provide a detailed picture of a student’s performance in each subject area or class by featuring a narrative that describes the student’s skills and habits relative to the Commitment to Guiding Principles and Subject-area Objectives for the course.
  • Conferences: In grades K-5, a meeting of teacher and family and, where appropriate, student, takes place twice a year–in the fall and in the spring–to provide a place for further discussion of student progress. In grades 6-8, each student leads a conference in the fall with his or her parents/guardians and advisor to reflect upon performance so far in the school year and to set a learning goal for the remainder of the year. Another conference is held in the spring to review the student’s progress towards his or her learning goal.
  • Exhibitions: Students at all grade levels present and reflect upon their learning through a public exhibition of their work at various points throughout the school year.
  • MAP: Measure of Academic Progress (MAP) testing takes place over two sessions, one for English/language arts and one for math. ANCS has been using MAP for the many years as a standardized measure of academic growth. It is one of many data points teachers and administrators use to develop personalized learning strategies for students. MAP is a computer-adaptive assessment that is given 3 times a year. This measurement of growth over time, allows us to monitor your child’s progress throughout the school year and across multiple years.
  • Georgia Milestones: The Georgia Milestones Assessment System (Georgia Milestones) is a comprehensive assessment system spanning grades 3 through 12. Georgia Milestones measures how well students have learned the knowledge and skills outlined in the state-adopted content standards in English/language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies. Students in grades 3 through 8 will take End-of-Grade (EOG) assessments in English/language arts and mathematics. Students in grades 5 and 8 will also take the EOG science assessment, and students in grade 8 will also take the EOG social studies assessment.
    Georgia Milestones Spring 2023 Testing Calendar
  • Standardized Test Score Reports: Student assessment score reports on standardized tests are provided to families following their arrival to the school. The score reports are accompanied by a cover letter that further explains the tests, a guide to interpreting the score reports, and a series of questions designed to help students reflect upon their performance.


ANCS does not use ranks or traditional A-F grades. Rather, student academic performance is documented in relation to a student’s progress towards the standards for each performance area at each grade level.

Kindergarten – 5th Grade

  • 1 – Not Yet: The student demonstrates a minimal or very limited understanding and/or has difficulty acquiring the skills or content, and is unable to use them fully in typical situations, even with support. There is minimal or very limited evidence that the student access, apply, and/or analyze the standard.
  • 2 – Just Beginning: The student demonstrates limited understanding of the standard, appropriate skills, or required content. There is limited evidence that a student can access, apply, and/or analyze the standard and may require support.
  • 3 – Approaching: The student demonstrates general understanding of the standard by identifying the appropriate skills or required content. Most of the time, there is evidence that a student can access the skills or content and integrate it into typical or familiar situations. There is some evidence that the student can apply and/or analyze the skills or content in typical or familiar situations.
  • 4 – Meeting: The student demonstrates full proficiency of the standard by consistently accessing (understanding and finding meaning in), applying (interpreting for others or other situations), and analyzing (breaking down into components or pieces) the skills or required content. These applications are applied consistently in a wide variety of situations while demonstrating originality and insight.
  • 5 – Exceeding: The student consistently demonstrates an in-depth understanding of the standard by completing advanced applications of the material in which evaluation (critiquing against other criteria) and manipulation/synthesis (creating multiple-perspectives, empathy, and/or self-knowledge) are evident. These applications are applied almost faultlessly with the student consistently demonstrating originality and insight.
Guiding Principles and Effort
  • R – Rarely: Student is rarely self-directed, rarely displays initiative in her/her own learning or accountability for his/her own work.
  • O – Occasionally: Student is occasionally self-directed, occasionally displays initiative in his/her own learning and exhibits accountability for his/her own work.
  • U – Usually: Student is usually self-directed, usually displays initiative in his/her own learning and usually exhibits accountability for his/her own work.
  • C – Consistently: Student is consistently self-directed, consistently displays initiative in his/her own learning and consistently exhibits accountability for his/her own work.

6th – 8th Grade

  • Student academic performance is assessed in relation to progress towards a set of four skills-based objectives in each subject area.
  • At the end of each unit of study, students complete a summative assessment task as a benchmark of their performance on skills taught during the unit. These assessments are
  • On individual assessments, students earn a score ranging from 0 through 8. Students scoring in the 4, 5, and 6 range are considered to have acquired the skills at the level taught in the unit. Students earning a 7 or 8 are able to apply their skills in unfamiliar contexts or analyze in a sophisticated manner. Students scoring in the 1 or 2 range are generally missing skills needed to be successful in the unit.
  • All rubrics are year-end rubrics, and are thus based on the outcomes expected by the end of each grade level. As such, lower scores are expected at the beginning of the year with growth happening over the course of the year. Students are assessed a minimum of twice in each criteria in each subject area.
  • At the end of the year, students are assigned a final grade ranging from 1 to 7 in each subject area class based on their year-end performance. Scores throughout the year are NOT averaged; rather, the level of skill attainment in the final units of the year are used to acknowledge growth and recognize where students are at the end of the year.

Below are the general grade descriptors provided by the International Baccalaureate Organization for what students at each level are able to do.

  • 1 – Produces work of very limited quality. Conveys many significant misunderstandings or lacks understanding of most concepts and contexts. Very rarely demonstrates critical or creative thinking. Very inflexible, rarely using knowledge or skills.
  • 2 – Produces work of limited quality. Expresses misunderstandings or significant gaps in understanding for many concepts and contexts. Infrequently demonstrates critical or creative thinking. Generally inflexible in the use of knowledge and skills, infrequently applying knowledge and skills.
  • 3 – Produces work of an acceptable quality. Communicates basic understanding of many concepts and contexts, with occasionally significant misunderstandings or gaps. Begins to demonstrate some basic critical and creative thinking. Is often inflexible in the use of knowledge and skills, requiring support even in familiar classroom situations.
  • 4 – Produces good-quality work. Communicates basic understanding of most concepts and contexts with few misunderstandings and minor gaps. Often demonstrates basic critical and creative thinking. Uses knowledge and skills with some flexibility in familiar classroom situations, but requires support in unfamiliar situations.
  • 5 – Produces generally high-quality work. Communicates secure understanding of concepts and contexts. Demonstrates critical and creative thinking, sometimes with sophistication. Uses knowledge and skills in familiar classroom and real-world situations and, with support, some unfamiliar real-world situations.
  • 6 – Produces high-quality, occasionally innovative work. Communicates extensive understanding of concepts and contexts. Demonstrates critical and creative thinking, frequently with sophistication. Uses knowledge and skills in familiar and unfamiliar classroom and real-world situations, often with independence.
  • 7 – Produces high-quality, frequently innovative work. Communicates comprehensive, nuanced understanding of concepts and contexts. Consistently demonstrates sophisticated critical and creative thinking. Frequently transfers knowledge and skills with independence and expertise in a variety of complex classroom and real-world situations.
Commitment to the Guiding Principles

Four times throughout the year, students earn a Commitment to Guiding Principles score on the rubric provided below in each of their classes. The rubric, developed by the school, aligns in scale to IB rubrics to support consistency in reporting. The guiding principles are shared between the Elementary and Middle Campuses, providing continuity in the student experience. Below the rubric are indicators that help students and teachers to assess specific areas of strength and opportunities for growth.

  • 0 – Does not reach the standard outlined by any of the descriptors.
  • 1-2 – Follows the Guiding Principles with significant prompting from adults and inconsistently responds to redirection.
  • 3-4 – Follows the Guiding Principles with some prompting from adults and responds to redirection positively through earnest reflection.
  • 5-6 –  Follows the Guiding Principles independently and makes attempts to help others make good choices
  • 7-8 –  Authentically demonstrates the Guiding Principles independently; positively influences peers and encourages them to make good choices.