Challenges for Teachers in
Grading and Reporting
Regardless of how they feel about grading and reporting, teachers at all levels are required to evaluate students' performance and to report the results of those evaluations to parents, students, and others. Understanding the challenges this imposes on teachers is essential to improving the process. In this chapter we'll explore those challenges and describe how teachers deal with them in their efforts to develop grading policies and practices that are accurate, honest, and fair.
One of the most pressing challenges for teachers in grading and reporting is to limit the negative influence of personal subjectivity. As described in Chapter One, grading is basically an exercise in professional judgment that involves one person (a teacher) making evaluative decisions about the performance of another person (a student). As such, it's an inherently subjective process. Even in schools with specific grading policies, individual teachers usually have great latitude in deciding what counts as part of the grade, how each of those elements will be evaluated or scored, and how those scores will be combined in determining the grade. In most instances teachers also choose how they will assess students' learning, how