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One-semester Change to Our Grading Policies
Posted 4/13/20

Dear FUSD Community,
In response to these unprecedented circumstances, all Fremont Unified School District schools will be closed for the remainder of the school year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, FUSD has adopted a one-semester change to our grading policies for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.

 

  • At all levels, TK-12, student performance and final second semester grades (secondary) and third trimester (elementary) are protected by a “hold-harmless” clause which does not allow final semester/trimester grades to fall below where they were on March 13, 2020.
  • FUSD elementary schools will not include overall subject grades or performance levels for standards for the third trimester report card. All trimester three standards and overall grades will be marked with a slash, indicating they will not formally be assessed. Teachers will give summative comments for each student.
  • FUSD secondary schools will transition to credit (CR)/no credit (NCR) grading for the second semester of 2019-20 for all secondary schools (fourth semester for John F. Kennedy High School and Robertson High School). Additionally, CR and NCR will have no impact on GPA for students during this grading period. Student placement in courses for 2020-2021 school year will be determined by their first semester grades. Students must continue to earn “CR” for the second semester to advance.

The decision to make this temporary change to district grading policies comes after consultation of the distance learning guidelines from the California Department of Education. We received input from students, parents, classroom teachers, principals, district personnel, and the FUSD Board of Education.

Elementary Grading
These are unprecedented times that require us to move away from our usual practices. The health and well-being of our community and our world is of the utmost importance. This temporary change in grading policy ensures protection for students and eases pressures on all stakeholders.
We made this decision collaboratively in the best interest of our students. Critical factors in our decisions
include:

  • Timing: elementary students only received five (5) days of instruction in a classroom setting for the third trimester.
  • Equity: elementary students may not have the necessary supplies, technology, or support to participate in distance learning at home.
  • Assessment: distance learning does not afford the same level of assessment opportunities that exist in a classroom setting.

Secondary Grading
We believe that moving to credit/no credit, for one semester, will be a benefit to our high school students without any negative consequences for college admission. Universities including the University of California (UC), the California State University (CSU) and the California Community College system have released guidelines which suspend the letter grade requirement for this semester in response to the current learning conditions. The universities have made it clear that students will not be penalized for posting credit/no credit transcript grades for this semester, regardless of their current grade level in school. Each FUSD high school will indicate this temporary change in grading policy in their School Profile, a reference document for universities as part of the college admission process.

At this time, the changes FUSD has made are temporary, covering only the second semester (secondary)/third trimester (elementary) of the 2019-2020 school year. We believe this move will also lower the stress level for teachers allowing them to focus on lesson planning and activities for remote learning that benefit students. Student wellbeing remains our top priority. We believe this decision will also help students and families adjust to this new way of learning in an equitable manner. District staff is meeting continually to evaluate whether changes will be necessary for the summer or fall terms, and will continue to communicate with the parent and student community. We thank you for your patience, understanding, and flexibility as we navigate these unprecedented times.

Sincerely, FUSD Board of Education and Acting Superintendent