Student Evaluation and Examination Policies
At the beginning of each course, students will be informed about expectations, curriculum content and evaluation. Students will also be informed about the assignment requirements, tests, and the calculation of the final mark. On-going formative assessments will be conducted to improve knowledge and skills as well as summative evaluation to demonstrate achievement for each course.
Ontario Secondary School (OSS) courses will follow the curriculum expectations and achievements in the Ministry of Education curriculum policy documents.
In the Growing Success Ontario Ministry of Education Document 2010,
Categories of Knowledge and Skills
The achievement chart identifies four categories of knowledge and skills that are common to both the elementary and secondary panels and to all subject areas and disciplines. The categories, defined by clear criteria, represent four broad areas of knowledge and skills within which the expectations for any given subject/course can be organized. The four categories should be considered as interrelated, reflecting the wholeness and interconnectedness of learning. The categories help teachers to focus not only on students’ acquisition of knowledge but also on their development of the skills of thinking, communication, and application.
The categories of knowledge and skills are as follows:
* Knowledge and Understanding: Subject-specific content acquired in each grade/course (knowledge), and the comprehension of its meaning and significance (understanding)
* Thinking: The use of critical and creative thinking skills and/or processes
* Communication: The conveying of meaning through various forms
* Application: The use of knowledge and skills to make connections within and between various contexts
In all subjects and courses, students should be given numerous and varied opportunities to demonstrate the full extent of their achievement of the curriculum expectations (content standards) across all four categories of knowledge and skills. Teachers will ensure that student learning is assessed and evaluated in a balanced manner with respect to the four categories, and that achievement of particular expectations is considered within the appropriate categories. The emphasis on “balance” reflects the fact that all categories of the achievement chart are important and need to be a part of the process of instruction, learning, assessment, and evaluation in all subjects and courses. However, it also indicates that for different subjects and courses, the relative importance of each of the categories may vary. The importance accorded to each of the four categories in assessment and evaluation should reflect the emphasis accorded to them in the curriculum expectations for the subject or course, and in instructional practice.
To further guide teachers in their assessment and evaluation of student learning, the achievement chart provides “criteria” and “descriptors”. The criteria are the subsets of knowledge and skills that define each category. They identify the aspects of student performance that are assessed and/or evaluated, and serve as a guide to what teachers look for. For example, in the English curriculum in the Knowledge and Understanding category, the criteria are “knowledge of content” and “understanding of content” and include examples such as forms of text and elements of style, and relationships among facts, respectively. The descriptors indicate the characteristics of the student’s performance, with respect to the particular criterion, on which assessment or evaluation is focused. Effectiveness is the descriptor used for each of the criteria in the Thinking, Communication, and Application categories. What constitutes effectiveness in any given performance task will vary with the particular criterion being considered. Assessment of effectiveness may therefore focus on a quality such as appropriateness, clarity, accuracy, precision, logic, relevance, significance, fluency, flexibility, depth, or breadth, as appropriate for the particular criterion.
Levels of Achievement
The achievement chart also identifies four levels of achievement, defined as follows:
Level 1 represents achievement that falls much below the provincial standard. The student demonstrates the specified knowledge and skills with limited effectiveness. Students must work at significantly improving learning in specific areas, as necessary, if they are to be successful in the next grade/course
Level 2 represents achievement that approaches the provincial standard. The student demonstrates the specified knowledge and skills with some effectiveness. Students performing at this level need to work on identified learning gaps to ensure future success.
Level 3 represents the provincial standard for achievement. The student demonstrates the specified knowledge and skills with considerable effectiveness. Parents of students achieving at level 3 can be confident that their children will be prepared for work in subsequent grades/courses.
Level 4 identifies achievement that surpasses the provincial standard. The student demonstrates the specified knowledge and skills with a high degree of effectiveness. However, achievement at level 4 does not mean that the student has achieved expectations beyond those specified for the grade/course.
Specific “qualifiers” are used with the descriptors in the achievement chart to describe student performance at each of the four levels of achievement – the qualifier limited is used for level 1; some for level 2; considerable for level 3; and a high degree of or thorough for level 4. Hence, achievement at level 3 in the Thinking category for the criterion “use of planning skills” would be described in the achievement chart as “[The student] uses planning skills with considerable effectiveness”.
It is the student’s responsibility to be present for all assessments and evaluations given in each course. If the student is aware, in advance, that a test will be missed, it is again the responsibility of the student to inform the teacher including school sponsored events. Failure to communicate with the teacher in advance may result in a zero on the evaluation. If absent due to illness, a written note by parent/guardian for students under 18 years will be required and in some instances, a medical note may be asked.
At the end of each term, the student/parent will receive a report card that records student academic progress, learning skills, attendance and lates, and credit accumulation towards the OSSD. A copy of this report card will also be maintained in the Ontario Student Record (OSR) file by the school.
Learning skills include: work independently, work habits/homework, organization, initiative, and teamwork. Achievement of these 5 learning skills is reported by using the following codes: N = Needs Improvement S = Satisfactory G = Good E = Excellent
Students who wish to withdraw from a course must inform the teacher in writing by a parent/guardian for students under 18 years of age or by the student who is 18 years of age or over. The course will not be identified on the official student transcript if the course is dropped 5 days after the mid-term mark is issued. Otherwise, full disclosure will occur after 5 days and shown as withdrawn.
In all credit courses requiring examinations, the following condition apply:
• written exams will be timed and supervised
* mid-term test will be a maximum of 15% in the course work of 70%
* formal exam at the end of course will be a final evaluation mark of 30%
* student is responsible for checking the exam schedule to note when the exam will be written on a specific date and time; no extra time will be give if student is late
* student who is absent from any formal examination or final evaluation will receive a “O” unless a medical certificate is provided to the principal or designate
The exam schedule and reporting periods are recorded on the school calendar.
To ensure that assessment, evaluation, and reporting are valid and reliable, teachers use practices and procedures that are fair, transparent, and equitable for all students; support all students, including those with special education needs.