Grading Scales & Comments

The Grading Scales & Comments screen is used to create the grading scales for the school, as well as set up the report card comments teachers can use to post short comments or pull-down comments for report cards.

Grading scales determine the GPA value of each grade as well as if the grade receives credit. Multiple grading scales can be set up for the school to accommodate different grading needs, such as unweighted, honors, AP, pass/fail, etc. Each section is assigned a grading scale and a standards grading scale in Courses & Sections.

If your school allows teachers to request grade changes via the Request Grade Changes screen, and a reason code is required when requesting a grade change ("Enable reason code for grade change" system preference), you can create customized reason codes in the Grade Change Request Reasons tab. Focus also provides several hard-coded reason codes.

Adding a New Grading Scale

1. In the Grades menu, click Grading Scales & Comments.

The Report Card Grades tab is automatically displayed. Any existing grading scales are displayed as tabs along the left side of the screen.

2. To add a new grading scale, click the + tab.

3. In the blank row, enter a Grade Scale Title.

4. Select the Default check box to make this grading scale the default for the school. Only one grading scale can be marked as the default.

When a new section is added, the section will be assigned the default grading scale for both the regular and standards grading scale if the grading scales are not defined for the course in the Course Catalog. When grading scales are set on the course in the Course Catalog, they cannot be changed on the section.  

5. Select the Letter Grade Only check box if the grading scale uses letter grades only.

When a grading scale only contains letter grades, the GPA values are used to calculate grade averages, therefore GPA values must be populated.  

6. Show Average in the Gradebook is selected by default. Deselect the check box if you do not want students' running averages to display for teachers in the Gradebook or for parents and students in the Parent/Student Portal for sections with this grading scale assigned.

If the "Show Average in the Gradebook" option is not selected on the grading scale, teachers will not be able to utilize the "Use Gradebook" button in Post Final Grades and Post Standard Grades when posting grades for sections assigned this grading scale.

7. Press Enter to add the new row.

The row turns yellow to indicate a new row has been added.

8. Click Save.

The new grading scale now has its own tab on the left side of the screen. This is where the grades are added to the grading scale.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome

If grading scales are set up and attached to sections, the scales cannot be copied to other schools without breaking the links between the scales and sections. When the links are broken, this would require re-exporting the grading scales from the Course Catalog.

Adding a Grade to a Grading Scale

1. Click the grading scale tab on the left side of the screen.

2. In the blank row, enter the Title for the grade.

3. Enter a Description.

For example, for a rubric or standard grade such as "E," you can enter the description "Excellent" in the field.

4. Enter the GPA Value.

All grades should have GPA values assigned. The GPA values are used to calculate grade averages when only letter grades are posted.

5. Enter the Weighted GPA Value, if applicable.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome

6. Enter the Sort Order. This determines where the grade appears in lists.

7. If the grade does not give credit, deselect the Gives Credit check box.

8. Enter the Default Breakoff.

The default breakoff is the minimum value of the percent range for the grade. The highest default breakoff value represents an inclusive range starting at that value through 100%.

For example, the default breakoff for an A might be 90. This means 90%-100% equals an A.

Subsequent default breakoff values will represent an inclusive range from that breakoff value to 1% below the next highest default breakoff value.

For example, the default breakoff value for a B might be 80. This means 80%-89% equals a B, since A starts with a 90%.

No titles should have the same default breakoff value.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome

9. Select the Incomplete check box if this grade is an incomplete grade.

When an incomplete grade is given to a student, the student's overall grade will be an incomplete.

10. Select the Excluded check box to exclude the grade from grade calculations.

For example, you might have an NG (Not Graded) that you want to exclude from averaging when pulling or posting grades. When given an NG, the student's average will not be 0, but rather the NG will not be included in the grade calculation.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome

11. Press Enter to add the row.

The row turns yellow to indicate a new row has been added.

12. Click Save.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome

A grading scale can be set up for standards based grading that will display a check mark, check plus, and check minus on the standard grades report card. The grading scale must have grades added that are titled CK, CK+, and CK- or CH, CH+, and CH-.

Editing a Grading Scale

1. Click the + tab to change the title, default status, letter grade only status, or "Show Average in Gradebook" status of a grading scale.

2. Click the desired field and make the modification.

The field turns yellow to indicate a change has been made.

3. Click Save.

Deleting a Grading Scale from the + Tab

Deleting a grading scale that is assigned to sections will break grades in the Gradebook for those sections.

1. Click the + tab.

2. Click the delete icon next to the grade scale title.

3. In the confirmation message, click OK.

The row is grayed out to indicate it will be deleted.

4. Click Save to complete deletion.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome
Editing a Grade in a Grading Scale

1. Click the tab of the grading scale if not already opened.

2. Click the desired field and make the modification.

The field turns yellow to indicate a change has been made.

3. Click Save.

Deleting a Grade in a Grading Scale

1. Click the tab of the grading scale if it is not already opened.

2. Click the delete icon next to the grade.

3. In the confirmation message, click OK.

The row is grayed out to indicate is will be deleted.

4. Click Save to complete deletion.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome
Editing the "Show Running Average in Gradebook" Option from the Grading Scale Tab

1. Click the tab of the grading scale if it is not already opened.

2. Select or deselect the Show Running Average in Gradebook check box.

Deselect the check box if you do not want students' running averages to display for teachers in the Gradebook or for parents and students in the Parent/Student Portal for sections with this grading scale assigned.

Deleting a Grading Scale from the Grading Scale Tab

Deleting a grading scale that is assigned to sections will break grades in the Gradebook for those sections.

1. Click the tab of the grading scale if it is not already opened.

2. Click Delete Scale.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome

3. In the confirmation message, click Yes.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome
Adding a Report Card Comment

Report card comments are used by teachers to post comments for report cards or progress reports. The system preferences "Short comments per course" or "Pull-Down Comments" must be enabled in Setup > System Preferences > Grading tab for these comments to be available for use by teachers. The "Short comments per course" preference allows teachers to use the comment codes to enter comments when posting grades. The "Pull-Down Comments" system preference allows teachers to select one or multiple comments from a pull-down when posting grades. Both methods use the same set of comments set up in Grading Scales & Comments, but are different entry methods.

1. In the Grades menu, click Grading Scales & Comments.

2. Click the Report Card Comments tab.

Any existing report card comments are listed.

3. In the blank row, enter a Code.

4. Enter the Title.

The title is limited to 100 characters.

The code is the value teachers will enter when posting short comments per course. The title is the description of the comment. When using pull-down comments, teachers can select the comments from a pull-down list. The code will display on the report card next to the posted grade for each section. If explanations of comments are included on the report card, the titles will print for each code the student received.

5. Press Enter to add the row.

The row turns yellow to indicate a new row has been added.

6. Click Save.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome
Editing a Report Card Comment

1. Click the Code or Title field and make the modifications.

The field turns yellow to indicate a change has been made.

2. Click Save.

Deleting a Report Card Comment

When report card comments are in use, they should not be deleted.

1. Click the delete icon next to the report card comment.

2. In the confirmation message, click OK.

The row is grayed out to indicate it will be deleted.

3. Click Save to complete deletion.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome
Adding a Grade Change Request Reason

The Grade Change Request Reasons tab allows you to customize the “Reason Code” pull-down options when a grade change is requested by a teacher via Grades > Request Grades Changes and then reviewed by administrators via Grades > Approve Grade Changes. The reasons provided by Focus cannot be deleted.

The system preference "Enable reason code for grade change" must be selected in Setup > System Preferences > Grading tab to enable the reason code functionality.

1. In the Grades menu, click Grading Scales & Comments.

2. Click the Grade Change Request Reasons tab.

The reasons provided by Focus are listed, as well as any customized reasons that have already been added.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome

3. In the blank row, enter the Title for the reason. This is the description.

4. Enter the Code for the reason.

5. Enter the Sort Order. This determines the order the reasons displays in the Reason Code pull-down.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome

6. Press Enter to add the row.

The row turns yellow to indicate a new row was added.

7. Click Save.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome
Editing a Grade Change Request Reason

After a grade change reason is in use by teachers, the title can be changed if needed but the code should not be changed.

1. Click the Title, Code, or Sort Order field and make the modifications.

The field turns yellow to indicate a change has been made.

2. Click Save.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome
Deleting a Grade Change Request Reason

Reasons provided by Focus cannot be deleted.

1. Click the delete icon next to the reason title.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome

2. In the confirmation message, click OK.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome

The row is grayed out to indicate it will be deleted.

3. Click Save to complete deletion.

Grading Scales & Comments - Google Chrome