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
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.
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:
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.