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El Paso County Colorado District 49

FHS parents decry grading system

In late October, Falcon High School parent Deanna Ronco initiated a petition against the standards-based grading system used at Falcon High School. As of Oct. 20, 200 parents had signed it.The petition states, ìWhile it (the grading system) was well-intentioned, it has proved to be a detrimental transition for students, parents and teachers alike. There is no consistency among the teachers as to how to use the grading system.îìThey (teachers and administrators) assume that we donít understand it (the grading system) and thatís frustrating because I know how the system says itís supposed to work, and thatís not how itís working,î Ronco said.According to an article in the December 2012 issue of The New Falcon Herald, FHS assistant principal Steve Oberg said, ìThe system will evaluate whether a student knows or meets a learning standard or benchmark and determine the depth of that studentís knowledge. The standards-based grading system takes behavior out of the system. It takes participation, having good attendance, that kind of stuff out because that tended to inflate or deflate a studentís grade.îìOn this system, not all grades (for assignments in each class) count so kids are unsure which grades count, which ones donít, what a teacher is going to collect,î Ronco said.ìWith the petition, weíre hoping that the administration at the high school and the school board will recognize there are more than just a few parents that donít like the grading system and want it changed back.îRonco said FHS principal Cheryl Goodyear-DeGeorge expressed interest in conducting a parent meeting before the next regular meeting of the Falcon School District 49 Board of Education on Nov. 13. It will provide a chance for parents to voice their concerns to her, and then parents can decide what steps to take next, such as presenting the petition to the BOE, Ronco said.

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