The Academic Partnership

Contents

Student Responsibility
Assignment Books
Homework
Homework - Online
Extended Assignments
Pennsylvania Reading Assessment Rubric
Pennsylvania Writing Assessment Rubric
Pennsylvania Mathematics Assessment Rubric

 

Student Responsibility

Students, faculty and administration share the responsibility for making the Middle School a place where learning can take place with enjoyment for all.

Students are expected to:

  1. Attend school;
  2. Exert maximum effort in all class work;
  3. Participate in extra-curricular activities
  4. Become familiar with and follow the school rules.

Students should seize the opportunity to learn as much as they can from their classes. They also must respect the rights of others in the school and not interfere with another student's learning or the teacher's attempts to teach.

Students have the right, but not unlimited, to express their ideas and opinions in school. This expression of thought should be done in a courteous and thoughtful manner. Disrespectful, offensive language or statements directed toward fellow students and/or any school personnel are considered inappropriate and are unacceptable.

We expect our students to assume responsibility for adhering to the following regulations:

  1. Become familiar with all rules and regulations for student behavior and conduct themselves in accordance with them. Students should assume that, until a rule is waived, altered or repealed in writing, it is in effect.
  2. Volunteer information in matters relating to the health, safety and welfare of the school community and the protection of school property.
  3. Dress and groom themselves to meet fair standards of safety and health. Their dress and grooming must not cause substantial disruption to the educational processes.
  4. Support the school staff in operating a safe school for all students.
  5. Comply with Commonwealth and local laws.
  6. Exercise proper care when using public facilities and equipment.
  7. Attend school daily and be on time for all classes and other school functions.
  8. Make up work (class work, homework, tests, quizzes, etc.) when absent from school within one day for each day of absence.
  9. Pursue and attempt to complete satisfactorily the courses of study prescribed by Commonwealth and local school authorities.
  10. Report accurately and not use indecent or obscene language in student newspapers or publications.

The Key To Success: Assignment Books

Students are expected to use an assignment book They will receive one on the first day of school. The purpose of the assignment book is:

  1. to instill the habit of writing down clearly what is to be done,
  2. to have a record of work assignments available for parents and teachers to check, and
  3. to serve as an additional communication device between home and school.


Homework

Philosophy: Effective homework in which student achievement is raised is dependent upon many variables for success. These variables include purpose, type, quantity and quality of homework assigned, and grade level of the student. Design, completion, and evaluation is a shared responsibility among teachers, students, parents and guardians.Homework should have a clear purpose, should be relevant to students' lives and should, at the same time, be challenging and manageable. (Black, 1996).


Purpose:
Homework assignments can be broken down into five main categories:

  • Study Skills and Habits: Homework assignments are designed to improve such skills as reading for pleasure and understanding, note taking and studying.
  • Practice and Review: Homework assignments are designed to reinforce newly acquired skills or knowledge that was presented in class.
  • Preparation: Homework assignments are designed to provide background information to enable increased understanding for future lessons.
  • Skill Integration: Homework assignments are designed to use discrete skills and concepts learned in class and apply them in a completion of a single product; for example a book report or research product.
  • Extension: Homework assignments are designed to enable students to connect previous learned skills and concepts to real world situations and cross curricular.

Guidelines for Homework

  1. The recommended time frame for homework in Grades 6, 7 and 8 is approximately 60 - 80 minutes per day.
  2. Only homework received on time will be accepted for credit.
  3. Homework assignments will be posted in a consistent location and in such a way that students can look back for missed assignments (i..e. after returning from an excused absence)
  4. If a student is sick, he/she should contact their teacher about missing work. Students have one day for each day of an excused absence to make up schoolwork, including homework.

Grading Policy:

  • At the middle school level, teachers may evaluate homework in the following ways:
  • Homework will be checked for understanding and used formatively by the teacher to improve instruction. Such assignments would be used primarily to practice and review new skills and concepts.
  • Grades will sometimes be awarded for accuracy of homework content. Such assignments would be used to assess students' grasp of subject area content.

Roles and Responsibilities:

  • Administrators
    • To inform teachers, and students of homework policy.
    • To provide for periodic review of homework policy and guidelines.
    • To ensure that teachers comply with the District's homework policy.
  • Teachers
    • To design the homework for appropriate purposes.
    • To design the homework so that it can be accomplished by most students independent of direct support from others.
    • To clearly communicate the purpose and expectations of assigned homework to students.
    • To clearly communicate the purpose and expectations of homework assignments to parents via a course syllabus or other chosen method.
    • To encourage students to communicate about the homework difficulty or other needs that would have helped them better complete homework assigned.
    • To provide timely and appropriate feedback for students and parents.
  • Parents/Guardians
    • To provide time for students to complete homework.
    • To provide a place, free of distractions, for students to complete homework.
    • To provide the basic materials needed to complete homework.
    • To have an expectation that homework be completed.
    • To provide the supervision necessary to ensure the successful completion of homework.
    • To provide information to the teacher about homework questions or concerns, and feedback regarding the quantity and difficulty of homework.
       
  • Students
    • To use the standard assignment book to record homework assignments on a daily basis.
    • To have a clear understanding of the homework assignments before leaving school.
    • To have the books and materials necessary to complete the assigned homework.
    • To allocate an appropriate amount of time daily for the completion of homework.
    • To turn in homework assignments when requested.
Homework Club

Homework Club is available for students in grade 6, 7 and 8 who are in need of extra support and encouragement to assist them in completing homework assignments and improving their organizational and study skills. Middle School teachers supervise the students.

Homework Club meets from October through May from 2:40 pm to 3:30 pm, Monday through Thursday. Students may participate one to four days a week. Teachers identify students who might benefit from this program. Applications and information may be obtained from the grade level counselor.


Homework - Online
Each day, beginning at 4:00 pm, you can check your child's teacher's eFaculty assignment page to see the day's homework assignments. The homework program has been developed primarily to assist parents whose child has been absent from school or whose child may be experiencing difficulty in getting homework assignments communicated or completed. Please understand that the online homework system is not intended to remove a student's responsibility to enter daily assignments in his/her assignment books. All core class teachers have an assignments page which can be located by selecting the teacher's name on the eFaculty page of the Middle School website.

Extended Assignments

Guidelines for Extended Assignments

1. Teachers will:

  • Give clear and specific written directions that will include due dates and criteria for evaluation.  A parent signature may be required.

  • When appropriate, provide a sample of the finished product; also they will discuss their expectations for the quality as well and the quantity of the finished product.

  • Set interim deadlines as check points during the process. Parents may be asked to sign at each checkpoint to ensure their child is meeting deadlines.

2. Only projects submitted by the due date will receive full credit.

  • If a child is in the building on the day that a project is due, it must be handed in to the appropriate teacher during class time that day for full credit.

  • If a child is absent on the day a project is due, it must be turned in on the day of the student's return.

3. Late projects will be evaluated as follows:

1 Day Late

2 Days Late

3 Days Late

1 letter grade deduction

1 additional letter grade deduction

0


For example, a 7th grade student turns in a project one day late. After evaluating the project, the student receives a B. The project grade is lowered to a C because it is one day late.

Adaptations to this policy may be made depending on learning differences, I.E.P. requirements and extenuating circumstances.

Pennsylvania Reading Assessment Rubric

This rubric was designed by the reading assessment Advisory Committee to be used in the Pennsylvania Reading Assessment. The elements of reading being assessed through this rubric are limited to those that can be addressed through written responses in the on-demand performance portion of the assessment, specifically Understanding, Comprehension and Connections.Risk-taking is also an important element, developing throughout life's learning process. However, given the constraints of this assessment, Risk-taking was not included. The RAAC advises that assessment developed at the classroom, school and district levels include this element.

LEVEL 4

  • Demonstrates a thorough understanding of the complexity of the text through the detailed elaboration and extensions of text with sophisticated ideas, insights and reflections. There are no errors in text-based facts.
  • Exhibits a level of comprehension that extends beyond the literal, the the personal, critical and/or evaluative responses.
  • Cites evidence, makes a variety of strong connections to other experiences, texts, concepts, issues and/or cultural settings.

LEVEL 3*

  • Demonstrates confident, coherent and adequate understanding and interpretation of the text through some elaboration and extension.
  • There are no major errors in text-based facts.
  • Exhibits a level of comprehension that reflects extensions that are more literal or personal.Makes connections to personal experiences, other text and/or background knowledge.

LEVEL 2

  • Demonstrates a limited understanding an/or interpretation of the text. There may be errors in text-based facts.
  • Exhibits a level of comprehension the consists primarily of literal responses to the text.
  • Makes connections between other experiences and text that are disjointed, fragmented, limited and not integral to the text.

LEVEL 1

  • Demonstrates an attempt to respond with very limited evidence of understanding of the text.
  • There may be errors in text-based facts.
  • Exhibits a level of comprehension that consists of disjoined, incomplete or irrelevant responses.
  • Might use relevant copied text.Makes only distant connections to the text, using sketchy details.

LEVEL 0 - consists of three types of responses:

  • Non-Scorable (NS) papers are blank.
  • Off-Task (OT) papers show no relationship to task and text, are illegible, irrelevant copied text, or written in a language other than English.
  • Intentionally Off -Task (IO) papers are one that have unrelenting profanity, are a refusal to perform, state a baseless charge of too personal or are drawings, scribbling, etc.

*Note- Level 3 (or higher) is to be viewed as the performance standard for all students.

Pennsylvania Writing Rubric

  FOCUS CONTENT ORGANIZATION STYLE CONVENTIONS
4 Sharp, distinct, controlling point made about a single topic with evident awareness of task Substantial, specific, and/or illustrative content demonstrating strong development and sophisticated ideas. Sophisticated arrangement if content with evident and/or subtle transitions. Precise, illustrative use of a variety of words and sentence structures to create consistent writer's voice and tone appropriate to audience. Evident control of grammar mechanics, usage and sentence formation.
3 Apparent point made about a single topic with sufficient awareness of task. Sufficiently developed content Functional arrangement of content that sustains a logical order. Functional use of a variety of words and sentence structures that may or may not create writer's voice and tone appropriate to audience. Sufficient control of grammar, mechanics, usage and sentence formation.
2 Evidence of a single controlling topic but no apparent point. Limited content with inadequate elaboration or explanation. Confused or inconsistent arrangement of content with or without attempts at transitions. Generic word choice and limited control of sentence structures that inhibit voice and tone. Weakness in control of grammar, mechanics, usage and sentence formation.
1 Minimal evidence of controlling topic. Superficial and/or significantly limited content. Minimal control of content arrangement. Minimal variety in word choice and minimal control of sentence structures.  Significant weaknesses in control of grammar mechanics, usage and sentence formation.
   NON- SCORABLE  OFF-PROMPT
0
  • Is illegible; i.e., includes so many indecipherable words that no sense can be made of the response
  • Is incoherent; i.e., words are legible but syntax is so garbled that response makes no sense
  • Is insufficient; i.e., does not include enough to assess domains adequately
  • Is a blank paper

 

Is readable but did not respond to the prompt

 

 

Mathematics Combination Rubric - Middle School Level 

 

Communications

This is how I solve the problem

Reasoning

This is why I solve the problem using a select strategy

Representation

This is how I represent the problem and solution

4

My response is well organized and is logical.

I include an accurate, complete and thorough explanation of all the steps needed to correctly solve the problem.

My explanation of the strategy includes all details and is well organized.

I fully explain why I chose this effective and efficient strategy that leads to a completely correct conclusion or solution.

I use all the proper concepts, labels, details, symbols, and correct math terms in my explanation.

My representation is completely accurate and includes all of the data and all of the necessary relationships in the problem.

I include all of the labels, operation symbols, titles, and/or keys for the type of representation I chose.

I state correct conclusion completely supported from my representation.

3

My response is mostly organized or is logical.

I include an accurate explanation of most of the steps needed to correctly solve the problem.

My explanation of the strategy includes most details and is organized.

I mostly explain why I chose the effective strategy that leads to a completely correct conclusion or solution.

I use most of the proper concepts, labels, details, symbols and correct math terms in my explanation.

My representation is mostly accurate and includes most of the data and most of the necessary relationships in the problem.

I include most of the labels, operation symbols, titles and/or keys for the type of representation I chose.

I state my correct conclusion mostly supported from my representation.

2 My response is poorly organized or is illogical.

I include an explanation of some of the steps needed to solve the problem.

My explanation of the strategy includes some details and is organized.

I partially explain why I chose this strategy that leads to a partially correct conclusion or solution.

I use some of the proper concepts, labels, details, symbols, and correct math terms in my explanation.

My representation is partially accurate and includes some of the data and some of the necessary relationship in the problem.

I include some of the labels, operation symbols, titles, and/or keys for the type of representation I chose.

I state my conclusion partly supported from my representation or my representation leads to an unstated conclusion.
1

My response is not organized and is illogical.

I include an explanation of few or none of the steps needed to solve the problem.

My explanation of the strategy includes few or no details and is not organized.

I do not explain why I chose this strategy that leads to an incorrect conclusion or solution.

I use few or none of the proper concepts, labels, details, symbols and correct math terms in my explanation.

My representation is not accurate and includes few or none of the data or necessary relationships in the problem.

I include few or none of the labels, operation symbols, titles, and/or keys for the type of representation I chose.

I state my conclusion without support from my representation or I do not state a conclusion.


When the communication and reasoning rubrics are used separately, they both assess a student's ability to use the proper labels, details, symbols and math term in the explanation. When the individual rubrics are uni create the combination rubric the statement concerning the use of labels, etc, becomes redundant. Therefore, the labels statement is written only in the reasoning column, where it is most appropriate.