Making sense of your child’s report card

Getty Images file photo

Getty Images file photo

Across The City this week, thousands of elementary school parents are meeting with teachers to discuss their children’s report cards. While report cards are a time-honored way of informing parents and students about their progress in school, here at the San Francisco Unified School District we have a modern twist on the old-school tradition. We call it the Standards-Based Report Card.

The SFUSD’s Standards-Based Report Card makes sure a student’s progress is being measured the same way for every child.

In education, a standard simply means the thing students need to know — and be able to do — by the end of the school year in each grade. An example would be the task of reading a piece of text and answering questions about it. If children are doing this well, their number on the report card will be a 3 or 4. If they’re struggling with this skill right now, or they’re getting closer to reaching the standard but aren’t there quite yet, the number would be a 1 or 2.

Here are some other things you will see in your child’s elementary school report card:

Reading foundational skills is a set of basic skills necessary to be an effective reader. A P means proficiency (your child can do this well, and has mastered this skill). An N indicates your child needs more time to develop this skill, and may still develop mastery by the end of the school year.

Performance in physical education, fine arts, social development and work habits: The teacher will use the letters O, S or N to indicate outstanding, satisfactory or needs time to develop.

This year’s report card includes new standards for students who are learning English. If your child receives specialized English-language development instruction, then he or she will receive an additional score. These new scores are: EM for emerging, EX for expanding or BR for bridging.

Your child’s report card provides an opportunity for families, students and teachers to work together.

At your parent-teacher conference, you’ll want to ask your child’s teacher about all of the accomplishments and challenges your child is facing in school. Celebrate successes and work on solutions to your child’s challenges. You might be surprised by some of the easy ways you can help your child with learning.

Earlier I mentioned that the report cards are standards-based. California, like many states, is moving toward a new set of common-core standards, which are designed to prepare our students better for college and career success in the 21st century. The skills listed in language arts, math and science on our report card reflects these new national standards.

Richard A. Carranza is superintendent of the San Francisco Unified School District.

FeaturesThe City

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

A pile of refuse that includes car parts, tires and other items stands on a sidewalk on Egbert Avenue in the Bayview District on Tuesday, July 27, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
New surveillance effort aims to crack down on illegal dumping

’We want to make sure we catch people who are trashing our streets’

Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks at a news conference following a discussion with Asian-American and Pacific Islander community leaders at the Chinese Culture Center in Chinatown on Friday, March 19, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
SF could play a big role in overcoming Democrat apathy, driving voter turnout for Newsom

San Francisco voters are not used to swaying elections. Just think of… Continue reading

Health care workers treat a Covid-19 patient who needs to be intubated before being put on a ventilator at Providence St. Mary Medical Center during a surge of cases in Apple Valley, Dec. 17, 2020. Confronted with surging infections, California became the first state in the country to mandate coronavirus vaccines or testing for state employees and health-care workers. (Ariana Drehsler/The New York Times)
In California, a mix of support and resistance to new vaccine rules

By Shawn Hubler, Livia Albeck-Ripka and Soumya Karlamangla New York Times SACRAMENTO… Continue reading

Dave Hodges, pastor at Zide Door, the Church of Entheogenic Plants that include marijuana and psilocybin mushrooms, holds some psychedelic mushrooms inside the Oakland church on Friday, July 22, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
Psychedelic spirituality: Inside a growing Bay Area religious movement

‘They are guiding us into something ineffable’

Most Read