Students are assessed and evaluated in a manner consistent with Growing Success: Assessment, Evaluation and Reporting in Ontario Schools, 2010. Standards are based on the achievement charts found in the provincial curriculum policy documents for the courses in which they are enrolled. Evaluation is based on the level of achievement the student demonstrates in the skills and knowledge covered in a course. 70% of the final mark is based on work throughout the course and is determined through a variety of methods such as ongoing class demonstrations, presentations, essays, performances and classroom tests. This grade reflects the student’s most consistent level of achievement throughout the course, although special consideration will be give to more recent evidence of achievement.
30% of the final mark is based on a final summative evaluation that may be determined through a variety of methods in the latter portion of the course. These could include an essay, examination, performance or demonstration. This final evaluation reflects the student’s mastery of course expectations and demonstrates the range and level of student skills and knowledge towards the conclusion of the course.
At the beginning of each semester, students receive an outline of the course assessment practices from each teacher. This outline includes a description of the assessment of academic achievement and learning skills in the course. Students will be made aware of the distinctions between assessment for, as, and of learning as stated in Growing Success, 2010. Generally, assessment for learning refers to diagnostic assessment which identifies a student’s prior knowledge. Assessment as learning is used as an ongoing process of helping a student understand what he/she has mastered and of identifying potential weaknesses or next steps. Assessment of learning is a measure of the student’s mastery of course expectations and is measured in a percentage grade.
The primary purpose of assessment is to improve student learning. Information gathered through assessment helps teachers to identify students’ difficulties, and adapt instructional methods to meet students’ individual needs. In addition, the various forms of assessment are important tools for determining the effectiveness of the programs, instructional approaches and classroom practices at Discovery Academy.
Performance Standards: The Achievement Charts
The achievement charts mentioned above identify four categories of knowledge and skills that are common to all subject areas and disciplines. These are:
Knowledge and Understanding: Content and the comprehension of its meaning and significance.
Thinking: The use of creative thinking skills and/or processes
Communication: The conveying of meaning through various forms
Application: The use of knowledge and skills to make connections
Students will be given numerous and varied opportunities to demonstrate the full extent of their achievement of curriculum expectations across all four categories. In keeping with Growing Success, 2010, Windsor Islamic High School policy is to assess and evaluate in a balanced manner with respect to the four categories. At the same time, the relative importance of each of the categories may vary for different subjects and courses. Examinations and final summative tasks will reflect the balance between categories used in the 70% semester long evaluations.
While they are broad in scope and general in nature, the achievement levels shown below serve as a guide for gathering information, and act as a framework used to assess each student’s achievement. As such, they enable teachers to make consistent judgments about the quality of work, and provide clear and specific information about their achievement to students and their parents.
The following table provides a summary description of achievement in each percentage grade range and corresponding level of achievement:
|80 – 100%||Level 4||A very high to outstanding level of achievement. Achievement is above the provincial standard.|
|70 – 79%||Level 3||A high level of achievement. Achievement is at the provincial standard.|
|60 – 69%||Level 2||A moderate level of achievement. Achievement is below, but approaching, the provincial standard.|
|50 – 59%||Level 1||A passable level of achievement. Achievement is below the provincial standard.|
|Below 50%||Below Level 1||Insufficient achievement of curriculum expectations. A credit will not be granted.|
Note: Level 3 (70 – 79%) is the provincial standard. Teachers and parents can be confident that students who are achieving at level 3 are well prepared for work in the next grade or the next course.
Reporting Student Achievement:
Student achievement is communicated formally to students and parents by means of a report card. The report card focuses on two distinct but related aspects of student achievement: the achievement of curriculum expectations and the development of learning skills. The report card will contain separate sections for reporting on these two areas. The report card will also include teachers’ comments on the students’ strengths, areas in which improvement is needed, and ways in which improvement might be achieved. Separate sections are provided for recording attendance and lateness in each course.
The report card provides a record of the learning skills demonstrated by the student in every course in the following categories (as outlined in Growing Success):