North Tampa uses Mastery-Based Grading. MBG is a system that provides meaningful feedback to students and parents so that excellence can be achieved. MBG pushes students to focus on skill development and demonstrate evidence of mastery. This differs from the traditional system of grading, which focuses on calculating points to achieve a letter grade without reference to specific progress in learning objectives. MBG gives students and parents specific feedback about what skills have been learned and what still needs to be mastered. Students are graded on a four-point scale:
4 Evidence demonstrates detailed understanding
3 Evidence demonstrates understanding
2 Evidence demonstrates basic understanding
1 Evidence demonstrates partial understanding
0 No evidence
Students have opportunity throughout the semester to demonstrate their understanding and are continually encouraged to pursue comprehensive proficiency. Teachers do not just average a student’s scores, but instead assess the student’s level of mastery based on the evidence collected. For example, if a student earns evidence scores of 1,1, 2, and 4 in a particular essential skill, the teacher may assign a 4 if it is clear that the student has mastered the concept. In other words, the student is not penalized for taking longer to achieve mastery.
Grades become final at the end of the semester. Students in grades K-6 do not receive letter grades on their report cards. Transcripts reflect the final scores students earned on essential skills in that course by the end of the semester. (Letter grades may be assigned for students who transfer outside of North Tampa.)
Students in grades 7-12 are assigned a letter grade at the end of each semester, at which point the final grade goes on the student’s transcript. Letter grade equivalents are assigned according to the chart above as follows: 4 Points = A; 3 Points =B; 2 Points =C; 1 Point = I; 0 Points = I.
North Tampa Christian Academy does not use D grades. If a student has a grade of “I” in a course at the end of a semester, that grade will be reported on the transcript as a grade of “F” and the student will not receive credit for the course. All students in grades 7-12 who have received an F in core courses and are not on track for graduation must enroll in credit recovery courses in order to graduate on schedule. Families and students may choose to recover credits through approved options, including online courses, summer school, and other programs approved by the North Tampa Guidance Counselor. North Tampa has adopted this policy in order to provide students with the best chance for success. Students who have not demonstrated basic understanding of core concepts will not meet with a positive outcome in future academic endeavors. It is important for students and families to commit to student mastery of skills in grades 7-12 to ensure future success.
All high school students who earn a C or higher in a core course will be awarded one Carnegie Unit for a full semester course and .5 Carnegie Unit for a half-course.
Teachers are solely responsible for assessing the level of mastery their students have demonstrated on each of the essential skills of the course. If students or parents wish to appeal the demonstrated level of mastery on any of the essential skills, they should notify the Associate Head of School in writing within two weeks of the posted grade and make an appointment for a meeting to include the parent, the student, the teacher, and the Head or Associate Head of School. The final decision on the grade will be made by the teacher.