Grade Processing

The basics of Grade Processing is simply ensuring that marking period grades are posted for every student in a graded section, implementing a process for posting grades in the absence of a teacher when necessary, providing a means for teachers to correct posted grades after the posting window has closed, using reports to review the accuracy of the posted grades, and then carrying out the process of generating report cards.

Teacher Process for Posting Grades

Once the Grade Posting Window is open, elementary and secondary teachers will receive Portal Alerts for each graded section to let them know it is time to post grades.

These alerts will first appear 20 days prior to the end of the posting window and remain until the teacher has posted and saved the posted grades.

Teachers should use their Missing Grades report to review any ungraded assignments prior to posting final grades for the marking period.

Assignments can be graded from this report and will autosave to the gradebook.

The Post Final Grades screen provides a Use Gradebook button to allow the teacher to post en masse for each section.

The teacher may use the individual student Use Gradebook Grades link to post student by student.

For students with even one ungraded assignment, the link will say Gradebook Incomplete. If no grades have been entered, the link will say No Gradebook Grades.

Teachers will not be able to post for the entire class using the Use Gradebook button if there are ungraded assignments in the gradebook. The only exception is for Progress Periods.

If gradebooks have been combined, teachers must still post grades for each individual section.

If the district has opted to set a Min Quarter Posted Percent or Max Quarter Posted Percent and a grade falls outside of this score range, a pop-up will appear indicating the posted grade(s) is lower and/or higher than the set percentage.

SIS Grade Processing_7/2023.docx - Google Docs

When the teacher clicks OK, if the grade was higher than the Max Quarter Posted Percent, the grade is lowered to the Max allowed. If the grade was lower than the Min Quarter Posted Percent, then the grade is raised to the minimum allowed.

If the district has opted to set the System Preference “Force teachers to enter a comment if they override posted grade," a pop-up will appear if the teacher changes the grade to something other than what was in the gradebook.

Once the end date of the Grade Posting Window has passed, the Post Final Grades Screen (and/or Post Standards Grades) will be locked for teachers.

Monitoring the Posting Process Before and During the Posting Window

Focus allows districts to hide grades from parents and students while teachers are in the process of posting grades. Administrators at both the elementary and secondary levels have reports at their fingertips to ensure teachers are posting grades in a timely manner and are posting them accurately.

Hide Posted Grades from Parent/Student Portal

This option may be set at the district level, and if allowed, school administrators may be able to modify the setting. Posted grades can be hidden for a district or school for a specified number of days after the posting window has closed.

1. Go to Setup > System Preferences > choose Default School Preferences or School Preferences > Grading.

2. Scroll down to the middle of the screen to find, set and/or modify Hide Posted Grades from parents and students until grade posting closes.

3. If applicable, enter a value in the box for Hide grades until X days after posting closes.

System Preferences

4. Click the Save button if changes are made.

Teacher Gradebook Usage Report

This report allows administrators to monitor teacher activity within the gradebook at any time during the marking period. The report displays the number of assignments, most recent assigned and due dates and most recent grade changes for each teacher with a graded section.

1. Go to the Grades menu and select the Teacher Gradebook Usage report.

2. Click on any column header to sort the report by the data in the selected column.

3. Click the Excel icon to download the report or use the print icon in the footer to generate a PDF of the report.  

4. Use the Search box to filter the report to view a specific teacher.

Grade Breakdown Report

This report displays how many and what percentage of each letter grade has been posted by the teacher. It can be viewed for an individual or all teachers. There are several options for displaying data in the report:

  • By the grades in the gradebook for the current quarter 
  • By the posted grades for the current quarter, semester, full year or  an exam
  • By Teacher, Teacher & Course, or by Section

1. Go to the Grades menu and select Grade Breakdown.

2. Search for a teacher or display all Teachers by clicking Search without making an entry in the search box.

3. Select the grading period or the grading period (Gradebook) from the pull-down at the left.

4. Choose to display the selection by Teacher, Teacher & Course, or by Section.

Grade Breakdown by Teacher:

Grade Breakdown by Teacher & Course (can use the Search bar to view a specific teacher):

Grade Breakdown by Section:

Teacher Completion Report

The Teacher Completion Report contains two tabs; the Final Grades tab displays the teachers who have not yet posted marking period grades for any graded section. The Standard Grades tab displays the teachers who have not yet posted standards grades for any graded section with standards assigned to the course.  In the event a teacher is absent or for some other reason is unable to post their own grades, this report can be used to post grades for the teacher.

1. Go to the Grades menu and select Teacher Completion. Select the appropriate tab.

The Grade posting period dates are indicated at the top of the report. Once the time indicated has passed, teachers will be locked out from posting grades.

Teacher Completion

Administrators can post grades for teachers outside of the Grade Posting Window dates.

A red X indicates that the teacher has not yet posted grades for that period.

A blank displays if a teacher does not have a class scheduled during that period, has a class scheduled that is not set to be graded, or has already posted grades for the marking period for that section.

Teacher Completion
Missing Final Grades Report

This report shows a list of all students that are missing a posted grade for any class for the marking period. It is recommended to review this report prior to generating report cards.

1. Go to the Grades menu and select Missing Final Grades.

2. Search for a specific student or all students by leaving the search bar blank and clicking Search.

Missing Final Grades

Students appear multiple times if multiple teachers did not post a grade for that student.

An End Date displays if the student withdrew from the course before grades were posted.

Resort any column data by clicking the column header.

Use the Excel icon to download or the print icon to print the list.

Posting Marking Period Grades for an Absent Teacher

When a teacher is unable to post prior to the grade posting window closing, one option administrators or office staff have is to post the academic and/or standard grades from the Teacher Completion Report.

Posting Academic Grades

Because the Post Final Grades screen pulls the report card grade from the gradebook, office staff can post grades for the teacher; however it may not be feasible to post report card comments and/or conduct grades unless that information has been shared in advance or the district has some other process in place.

1. Go to the Grades menu, select Teacher Completion Report; the report defaults to the  Final Grades tab.

2. Click a red X for the relevant teacher and period.

Teacher Completion

The Teacher Program pop-up opens to Post Final Grades for the selected course.

3. Use the course pull-down under Teacher Program to select a different course. Administrators can post for an entire class or for individual students.

Post Final Grades

To post grades for an entire class click Use Gradebook at the top of the student list. If there are missing grades, the system will ask that all missing grades are entered prior to posting grades for all students. If all grades have been entered, the system will display a confirmation message prior to posting final grades. Click Ok to post final grades.

To post grades for an individual student click Use Gradebook Grades next to the individual student name. Students with missing assignments will display Gradebook Incomplete and students with NO graded assignments will display No Gradebook Grades. Administrators will not be able to post a grade for these students using Use Gradebook Grades.

Post Final Grades

Manually post grades for students by entering grades in the Percent & Grade text box. When a value is entered, the letter grade will populate according to the grading scale assigned to the section.

Report card comments can be copied from the previous quarter by clicking Copy Comments from Previous [Marking Period].

The display and use of Conduct Grades and Conduct Comments depends on district setup.

4. Click Save when all changes have been made. 

5. Use the course pull-down to post for the next section if applicable.

6. Close the pop-up window. Do not close by clicking the X next to the teacher name as this will NOT close the pop-up window even though the Completion Report displays.

Elementary Report Card comments may use the One Longer Comment per Student option. Follow district procedure for posting report card comments for elementary students when the teacher has not.

Posting Standard Grades

Typically used for the Elementary Homeroom/Attendance course, Standard Grades can also be posted from the Teacher Completion Report  Standard Grades tab in a teacher’s absence.

1. Go to the Grades menu and select Teacher Completion Report.

2. Select the Standard Grades tab.

3. Click a red X for the relevant teacher for the selected period.

Teacher Completion

The Teacher Program pop-up opens to Post Standard Grades for the selected course.

4. Administrators have several options to post from the Post Standard Grades screen, as described below.

a. Click Copy Standard Grades from the Last Marking Period. If standard grades have been posted for a previous marking period, administrators will see the option to Copy Standard Grades from the Previous Marking Period. Any students with missing grades from the previous marking period will remain blank after clicking this link.

Post Standard Grades

If the district has used the option Post Default Standard Grades, this option will not display on the Post Standard Grades screen.

b. Click Mass Update. Administrators can mass update the grades for a standard for all students by selecting Mass Update. Select the standard and the grade to be assigned to all students. Click Run Mass Update.

c. Individually Enter Standard Grades: Enter a value in each box for each student. Use the tab or arrow key to move across the screen and the enter or down arrow to move down the screen.

5. Click the Save button after Mass Updating or individually entering grades.

Pulling Grades

Grades can be Pulled by district or school administration for the grade posting process. This process takes a snapshot of teacher gradebooks to create the final grade records which are then displayed on Report Cards and in Course History as when grades are posted by teachers.

Pulling Grades is also another option to get grade records posted in a teacher’s absence.

1. Go to the Grades menu and select Pull Grades for Report Cards.

2. Select the applicable School(s) from the pull-down. If the user has access to multiple schools, this will appear as a pull-down.

Pull Grades for Report Cards

3. Select the Grade Level(s) to be pulled if school is combo or leave set to All.

4. Select the appropriate Marking Period(s) to pull.

5. How should gradebook blanks be handled?: Specify how ungraded gradebook assignments will be handled by selecting the appropriate option. The first two options will artificially inflate or deflate the grade for affected students.

6. Select the Mode to determine how to handle any grades which have already been posted by the teacher (if applicable).

Update existing & create new grades will override any grades a teacher has already posted and/or modified when pulling the current grades from the gradebook. It will create new grades if students had no posted grade.

Only update existing grades will only override any grades a teacher has already posted and/or modified when pulling the current grades from the gradebook. It will not post new grades even if students have no grades posted.

Only create new grades - don’t update existing grades will not override any grades posted and/or modified by the teacher. It will only post new grades based on the gradebook grades for students with no posted grades.

Updating existing & create new grades and Only update existing grades (the first and second options above) will override any grades the teacher has already posted or modified.

7. Select whether to Pull Grades & Comments or Only pull comments from the Pull Type section.

8. Select an Effective Date if different from the current date.

9. Select the Recalculate GPAs check box to recalculate GPAs based on the term and the school/district system preferences for consideration of weighted GPAs.

If GPA should not be calculated using weights (for example, the GPA for Qtr 1 should be unweighted regardless of the preference set for the school), then do not recalculate GPA on this screen. See the Calculate GPA and Class Rank section for more details.

10. Course Numbers to Include, Course Numbers to Exclude, and/or Students to Include:

These boxes are defaulted to “All” and “None.”

To only pull grades for specific courses, or to exclude certain courses from the pull, enter their course numbers in the corresponding boxes one course number per line.

To pull grades only for specific students, enter their student IDs one ID per line.

11. Click Run Pull to create grade records for the selected marking period.

If the posting window has been closed for more than 30 days, the following message displays: Errors were encountered when trying to pull, Please correct the errors and try again. You can't pull grades for [School] [Marking Period] because the term posting window closed more than 30 days ago.

A pop-up indicates that the system is running in the background.

12. Click Continue.

The user can navigate away from the screen while pulling grades. The pull will continue in the background and display a status upon returning to the screen. If a user has begun to pull grades, all other users will see the status and the user's name to ensure another pull is not started.

Using Pull Grades to Post Grades For Absent Teachers

The Pull Grades option can be used as an alternative to the Teacher Completion Report to post report card grades for students in a teacher’s absence. Note: This does not apply for Standard Grades.

Follow the Steps as described in the previous section EXCEPT:

On Step 3: Select the Grade Level(s) applicable for the teacher’s course(s).

On Step 10: Enter the teacher Course Numbers to INCLUDE and enter a list of Student IDs (one per line) in the Students to Include text box.

Reviewing Posted Grades Prior To and After Printing Report Cards

Before printing or publishing report cards, posted grades should be reviewed by administrators and/or teachers for accuracy. Depending on the school/district processes, teachers may have made adjustments to gradebook grades which may result in the need to recalculate the posted grade. The Posted Grades Verification report can be viewed to ensure a match between gradebook grades & posted grades. If teachers have the option to post a grade different from the gradebook grade, this report can be critical.

Processing Grade Change Requests

The Approve Grade Changes screen allows administrators to approve/deny teacher requests to have final grades changed after the grade posting window has closed. Users must have profile permission to view this screen.

Administrators will receive a Portal Alert stating how many grade change requests are awaiting review.


1. Click on the Portal Alert or go to the Grades menu and select Approve Grade Changes.

2. Due to the many columns on the Approve Grade Changes screen, it may be helpful to click the modal icon next to the student name to display the columns in a two-column table.

Approve Grade Changes

3. Click Approve or Deny in the Status column (or row if viewing expanded table).

4. Click the Close button to save the entry (or press the Return/Enter key if not viewing the expanded table).

Depending on district setup, when a request is approved, the Grade and GPA is updated and is reflected in the student’s course history for the affected term.

Teachers can view the Status on their Request Grade Change screen through the Teacher Portal.

Grade Verification Sheets

The Grade Verification Sheets compare teachers’ gradebook grades to their posted grades and can be printed for teachers to sign, verifying that their posted grades are correct. Posted grades that don’t match with gradebook grades will display in red.

It is a school based decision whether or not this feature is utilized. If the school decides to utilize this feature, it is recommended to be completed before printing the report cards. The office may print for teachers or the district may allow teachers to print their own.

1. Go to the Grades menu and select Print Grade Verification Sheets.

Print Grades Verification Sheets

2. Select the Teacher(s) name(s) from the pull-down menu.

3. Select the applicable Grade Level(s) from the pull-down.

4. Select the Sort Type to determine how verification sheets will be sorted. The options are Period Number, Course Name, and Course Number.

5. Select the Terms check boxes to identify the proper marking period for which to print.

6. Select the Comments and/or Conduct check boxes (Conduct may not be an option depending on your district).

7. Select the No Gradebook Grades check box to display only posted grades for the marking period.

8. Select the Calculated Gradebook Grades check box to display calculated grades. For example, for Semester 1, Focus will calculate the semester grade using the posted Quarter One grade and the current Quarter Two Gradebook grade.

9. Select the Stored (DT) Gradebook Grades check box to display the stored gradebook grade for the term, along with the posted grade.

10. Use the Directions text box to relay any directions to the teachers, which will be printed on the sheets.

11. Use the Course Numbers to Include text box to print for specific courses only. Enter one course number per line. Leave the All value in this box to print all courses.

12. Use the Course Numbers to Exclude text box if there are specific courses that need to be excluded from printing; otherwise leave the None value

13. Click Create PDF to a generate a PDF of the Grade Verification Sheets.

Print Grades Verification Sheets

Each period per teacher will display on a separate sheet.

The gradebook grade will display in red font if it is different from the posted final grade. If it is the end of the semester, the calculated Semester grade will be red if it too is different from what was posted.

a. Click Return to Focus in the upper far left corner to close the PDF view.

Student Final Grades Report

The Student Final Grades Report gives administrators an overview of the data that will appear on the report cards in a table format. This too, is an optional report.

1. Go to the Grades menu and select Student Final Grades.

2. Check the options to determine which columns will be included in the Student Final Grades report.

Student Final Grades

3. Scroll to the bottom of the same screen to continue making additional selections.

Student Final Grades

4. Click Continue when all selections have been made.

Student Final Grades

Click column headers to resort how the data displays.

Use the Search text box to search for specific criteria, such as the names of specific students or teachers.

The report can be downloaded to Excel or saved as a dynamic report.

Student Final Grades
Generating Report Cards

Districts may use one of two options for the report card: the built-in Focus Report card for which a template has been developed specifically for the district or the Sequel Server Reporting Services (SSRS) report card (also customized for the district in the configuration file).

Generating District Report Cards

The Generate tab of the District Report Cards & Transcripts screen is used to generate a zip file of district report cards. Each school is generated as a separate PDF file included in the zip file.

1. In the Grades menu, select District Report Cards & Transcripts.

The Generate tab is opened by default.

District Report Cards

2. If desired, enter a Zip File Name.

If no zip file name is entered, the zip file will be given the default name "District Report Cards & Transcripts - (Date)."

3. In the blank row, enter a File Name.

The name of the school selected in the School field will be used by default if no file name is entered.

4. Select the School for which to generate report cards or transcripts.

The school selected at the top-right of the screen is automatically selected.

5. Select the Grade Levels for which to generate report cards or transcripts.

The options that are displayed for selection depend on the school selected in the School field. If no grade levels are selected, then students in all grade levels will be included.

6. Select the Report Card Type: Report Cards, Standard Based Report Cards, or Transcripts.

7. Select the letterhead template to use in the Letterhead Templates pull-down.

The options saved as default for the letterhead template on the Report Cards screen, Standard Grades Report Cards screen, or Transcripts screen will be used to generate the report cards or transcripts.

8. Select Has Multilingual Template? to generate report cards using the student's primary language.

Ensure the system preference "Enable multi-lingual report cards" is enabled, the letterhead template is set up for the appropriate languages in Setup > Letterhead Templates, and the "Multilingual Report Cards" option is saved as default to the letterhead template on the Report Cards or Standards Grades Report Cards screen.

9. Select Include Inactive to include inactive students.

10. Select a Sort Order option to sort report cards or transcripts.

11. If applicable, select the Rotation Days for which to sort report cards or transcripts.

12. Press Enter to add the row.

District Report Cards

13. Continue adding additional rows as needed.

14. When ready to generate the report cards or transcripts, click Generate.

The History tab is opened. A pop-up message will display indicating the file generation has started.

15. Click OK to close the pop-up window.

The History tab displays the progress of the file.

District Report Cards
SSRS Report Cards

Once teachers have successfully posted grades and administrators have posted for any absent teachers, the school can print or publish report cards.

1. Go to the Reports menu and select SSRS Reports.

2. Select the applicable report option from the SSRS Report pull-down.

SSRS Reports

The screen defaults to the Generate tab.

SSRS Reports

3. Select the appropriate students. Enter one or multiple student IDs or use More Search Options to select a grade level (the recommended process is to print one grade level at a time).

4. Select the SSRS Template. Templates are school-level specific, i.e. K-5 schools may only see KG, 1-2, and 3-5 template options.

5. Select how generated report cards are sorted from the Sort Report by pull-down.

6. Select the Marking Period from the pull-down.

7. Click Search to generate the report cards.

8. Select the check box in front of Student to select all students in the list or choose students individually by selecting the check box in front of their name(s).

SSRS Reports

9. Enter a Batch Name (optional) to name the generated file.

10. Click Generate to create a PDF of the report card for the selected students.

SSRS Reports

The screen will open to the History tab after generating the reports.

If an error occurred, a green button to Retry will display along with Error listed in the Status column.

Click to View or Download the file (optional).

11. Click the Publishing tab to publish the report cards to the Parent/Student Portal for all or specific schools, grade levels, and marking periods using report templates. This requires the Edit profile permission to Publish SSRS Reports to Portal.

SSRS Reports

 A Start Date is required and defaults to the current date.

a. To limit the time the report cards are available on the Parent/Student Portals, enter an End Date (and End Time if desired).

12. Once all data has been entered, click into a text field and press the Enter/Return key to save. The saved data will display on a blue line.

If other report cards are published, such as Standards Report Cards, Elementary, etc., all reports will display simultaneously with only the most recent of each type showing in the table.

Calculate GPA and Class Rank

On the Grades menu is an option titled Calculate GPA. Depending upon district profile permissions, only District-level administrators may see the option. This Calculate GPA screen is used to generate a GPA and Class Rank for students at one or more schools.

When this option is used, the results will OVERWRITE any existing records.

Because GPA is school-year specific, this option will need to be run when the default school year is changed. Also, it must be run to calculate Class Rank on an option outside of the school’s System Preferences on the Grading tab. Cohort must be in the configuration file for it to display as an option on Calculate GPA.

1. Go to the Grades menu and select Calculate GPA.

2. Select the School(s) for which to run the process.

3. The Grade Level(s) and Marking Period(s) will only display what is active at the selected school(s).

For the example below, the Semester 2 Class Rank will be based on Unweighted GPA instead of the school’s system preference for using the Weighted GPA.

SIS Grade Processing_7/2023.docx - Google Docs

4. Click Calculate GPAs and Class Ranks after all options have been selected.

After the process runs, a green check mark and confirmation message listing the School(s) and Marking Period(s), will display at the top of the screen.