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Most of those who took the survey last month about the new elementary school report card for the Central Bucks School District gave high marks to the new tool.
The web-based survey was open April 6 through 30. It was communicated through email, social media, the district website, and school newsletters. Of the 960 respondents, there were 789 parents, 158 teachers, nine community members, and four students.
Nearly 90% agreed that, “The new report cards communicate student strengths and goal areas.” As to satisfaction with the report card (a five-point scale, with 5 being the highest), 68% gave a rating of 4 or 5, 19% chose a rating of 3, and 13% gave a rating of 1 or 2.
Many who completed the survey expressed appreciation for being asked for input and for the committee who completed the work. The comments were predominantly positive.
One parent wrote: “I like the ease of reading this report card. I like that I get a better picture of how my child is doing in school. I love the improvement!”
Another parent said: “I believe changing the grading periods to trimesters is more conducive to the learning process for both the students and the teachers.”
A teacher commented: “Thank you for all the hard, dedicated work to improve the report card! I think parents will appreciate the letter grades and the fact that the language matches rubrics used in the classroom.”
Other respondents said the new report card is clear and more easily understandable, with parent- and student-friendly language, and that it is comprehensive and easy to follow. Those who took the survey also said they applauded the addition of letter grades in grades 4-6 and appreciated the ability to see growth during the year. Respondents praised the consistency of language from year to year and felt that the trimester system provides more time for teaching and learning (less focus on assessment).
Among the comments suggesting further changes were that the use of different grading scales (letters, numbers, and symbols) may be confusing, the formatting of column and page breaks needs improvements, the document still looks “busy,” some prefer letter grades earlier than grade 4 and a subset of respondents prefer the current marking period system to trimesters.
The new elementary report card has been reviewed by the CB Board of School Directors Curriculum Committee and it will be on the May 23 agenda of the full board for review and possible adoption.
Sample report cards, survey results, and an FAQ document are posted here on the CB website.