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Rory Dippold, MYP Coordinator (

standards based learning and grading

What is Standards-Based Learning & Grading?

Standards-Based Learning and Grading is a system in which students receive feedback about their proficiency on a set of defined subject-specific criteria. Schools report students' levels of performance on these criteria.

This is a more equitable assessment practice because it:

  • Focuses on individual student learning versus competition

  • Separates behavior from academic proficiency

  • Provides students with specific, actionable, and meaningful feedback to improve performance

  • Allows students to demonstrate mastery over time and transfer learning

  • Establishes clarity and consistency for teachers, students, and parents

  • Challenges students to set realistic, relevant goals for themselves and track their progress

Why Standards-Based Learning & Grading?

We believe that reporting growth and progress towards mastery of subject-specific criteria allows students to take ownership of their learning. This practice aligns with Falls Church City Public Schools’ vision to be a premier IB division. We believe this best practice allows us to focus on improving student achievement and to foster reflective, life-long learners, as part of the IB’s mission.

Students are at the center of all IB programmes. Standards-based grading creates a student-centered environment by providing student voice and choice in how students demonstrate their understanding of the content to meet the criteria descriptors. Students also reflect on their progress and set individual goals for how they will approach their learning in order to improve their performance.

According to MYP: From Principles into Practice, assessment in the MYP aims to:

  • support and encourage student learning by providing feedback on the learning process

  • provide an opportunity for students to exhibit transfer of skills across subject

ALL Henderson Courses use standards-based learning and grading.