Baltimore City Public Schools believes all students can learn, and that families and communities are essential partners to students’ success. At the same time, student performance can be demonstrated through various methods. Our grading policy is grounded in instructional best practices and is a guideline for fair and consistent grading.
The Board-approved grading policy and regulation are as follows:
Please scroll down to view resources and FAQs for different aspects of grading. A downloadable version of this document may be found here (English | Spanish)
Every school has a unique policy created with the district's guidance and approval. Ask your principal, teacher, or counselor to see a copy of your school’s grading policy.
How often do students receive grades in the gradebook?
In core subjects (English Language Arts, Math, Social Studies, Science, and Career and Technical Education), students will receive a minimum of one grade per week. Each school can determine if there should be more.
What is the purpose of a gradebook?
Every teacher tracks a student’s grade in a gradebook, which is accessible to all parents and/or guardians. Parents and guardians have the ability to and are encouraged to monitor the gradebook throughout the school year.
What is the grade book update frequency?
Grade books should be updated weekly. Teachers should share how long they generally take to grade an assignment and update the grade book. If a family is concerned that the grade book is not being updated, they should reach out to the school.
Does attendance impact a student's ability to be promoted?
In City Schools, absences are not used as an element of a student’s grade; however, poor attendance will likely hurt a student’s ability to succeed in class.
How late can students turn in missing assignments due to absence?
Teachers will provide make-up work to student upon the student’s return to school. Teachers may assign an equivalent but different task or assessment to students when they return from any excused or unexcused absence. Students returning from an absence will be allowed at least the same number of days of the absence to complete make-up work. The time allowed for makeup work may be extended on a case-by-case basis for extenuating circumstances determined by the teacher. Schools must provide reasonable assistance to students in the completion of make-up work.
What are the expectations for retake/re-do/reassessments?
If a student receives an assessment grade with which they are unsatisfied, the student may request a reassessment. City Schools encourage schools to reassess students on assignments during the marking period. If a student’s understanding of the content assessed on a summative assignment shows improvement upon reassessment, that grade may be replaced with the new grade. The reassessment may take a different form from the original assessment but must be graded based on correctness and have the same weight in the gradebook as the previous assignment.
Will students be allowed to retake every assignment or assessment? How can students participate in reassessments?
Reassessments are a school-specific decision, so students and families should consult with their school and teacher to understand which assignments they can retake and when they can take them during the marking period/quarter.
What is meant by “L” for a grade?
The L= Late Enrollment. An “L” will be issued when students enroll in a course near the end of the marking period, without available equivalent grades from a prior school to inform the calculation of the marking period grade.
What's the difference between a “0” and a blank or an “M” in the gradebook for classwork, participation, or assessment?
The difference is in how the grades are calculated. A zero or an “M” for “missing” will be calculated as a zero. A blank grade will not be included in the calculation at all.
Under what circumstances can a student receive a PASS?
A “PASS” will be issued for:
i. Credit awarded through credit by exam
ii. Credit awarded for coursework from non-accredited schools;
iii. Credit awarded for home school instruction prior to enrollment in City Schools;
iv. It may also be used for English Language learners (ELs) in the beginning stages of English language acquisition (WIDA levels 1-1.7, verified in the online student information system) when English proficiency limits accuracy of earned letter grade.
How does a PASS/FAIL grade affect a student’s GPA?
If a student receives a PASS, the grade does not affect their GPA. GPA is calculated without the pass grade. If a student receives a FAIL, the grade is calculated as zero and the student’s GPA will decrease.
A student has blank grades in the grade book. What does that mean?
Students and families should speak with the teacher about any specific grade questions. The teacher may have added the assignment to the gradebook but they have not yet graded the work that was submitted. In other cases, the student may have been absent or did not turn in the assignment for some reason.
How can students in grades 9-12 make up credit through City Schools’ approved credit recovery programs?
Students can enroll in a City Schools credit recovery offering during the school year or the summer. Some credit recovery programs take place at the school, while the school district runs Saturday school and summer school options. Students can also retake the course during the school year. Students must pass a course in order to receive credit through a credit recovery program.
How are quarterly grades calculated for grades 2-5?
Students will be assigned grades for each subject area that evaluates the child’s knowledge and skills for that subject. Report cards will be issued following the conclusion of the marking period (e.g. after each quarter, trimester, or semester). The grades eligible for use on report cards for students in grades 2 through 5 are as follows:
How are quarterly grades calculated for grades 6-12?
Students receive a letter grade to designate the level of achievement in a course for a quarter. Letter grades are aligned with a numeric percentage (see table below). Quarter grades awarded to students will be A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D+, D, or F and may be based on performance on assessments, classwork, and class participation.
How are final grades calculated for grades 6-12?
Final grades awarded to students will be A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D+, D, or F. Students may be awarded a higher grade based on quarterly performance on Assessments, Classwork, and Class participation and End of Course (Mid or Final Examination) based on trends in and mastery of learning.
My child has a learning disability. How will they be graded?
Teachers will implement the accommodations and modifications determined by the student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP), and these accommodations must be used in both instruction and assessment. If students are not progressing on their IEP goals, an IEP meeting will be held to review and revise the IEP to address the lack of progress before the end of the following grading period.
My child is an English Language Learner. How will they be graded?
Teachers will implement the accommodations and modifications determined by the student’s EL committee and documented in his/her English Learner plan. These accommodations must be used in both instruction and assessment.
Who do families reach out to if they have a question about their student’s grades?
Families should always reach out to the teacher first if there are questions about the student’s grade. If a grading issue is not resolved, then the family should contact the school leader to request a conference with the teacher and school leader.
Where can families find a guide on how to see their student’s grades?
Parents and students can, and are encouraged to track grades using the Infinite Campus-Campus Portal. Parents without an account can create a new Campus Portal account here. Responses to other frequently asked questions about accessing student grades on Campus Portal can be found by visiting www.baltimorecitypublicschools/campus-portal
How are progress reports communicated to students and parents/guardians?
Schools are responsible for communicating progress reports to students and parents or guardians. Progress reports can also be found in the Infinite Campus-Campus Portal, and a school may print and share the progress report with families progress report dates can be found here.
How are report cards shared with students and parents/guardians?
Report cards will be distributed four times per year, at the end of each marking period/quarter. If a school has a trimester schedule, then the report cards will be distributed three times a year. Parents/guardians can view report cards in the Infinite Campus-Campus Portal at any time during the marking period. Report card dates can be found here.
How is a student’s grade calculated if they transfer during the marking period from one school to another within City Schools?
The receiving school will add the student’s incoming average as an assignment in the grade book. That grade will then be averaged with all other grades earned during the rest of that term.
How can I appeal a grading decision?
Students or their parents/guardians can initiate the formal process by contacting the Ombudsman at 443-984-2000. This will initiate an internal process involving the school and an assigned district office. If the student or their parent/guardian disagrees with the decision of the assigned office, they may appeal in writing the decision to further decision-makers in this order: the Ombudsman (within 15 business days of the assigned office's decision), then the CEO (within 30 business days of the Ombudsman's decision), then the Board of Education (within 30 business days of the CEO's decision), and then the State Board of Education pursuant to Section 4-205 of the Education Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland in that order.
If the complaint or inquiry concerns a school that has an external governing board (i.e., charter or transformation school), the complainant must follow the governing board's process for solving concerns before initiating the formal process.
Can families/students appeal a promotion or retention decision? How?
Yes, parents/guardians may appeal a promotion or retention decision.
The parent/guardian must file a written appeal to the school principal no later than either ten (10) business days after receipt of a retention decision or ten (10) business days after the last day of school, whichever date is later.
How are Pre-K-1students graded?
Pre-K students receive a marking period grade only; mid-term progress reports are not issued through Infinite Campus. Pre-K teachers are required to put in final term grades for each subject.
How frequently will the grade book be updated in Pre-K?
Pre-K teachers are required to put in final term grades for each subject. They are not required to enter weekly grades in Infinite Campus.
What do P, I, and N mean?
P = Proficient
I = In Process
N = Needs Improvement
Final grades are determined by the last term grade (Trimester 3 or Quarter 4).