At Mill Creek Middle School, we believe that students should be given multiple opportunities to practice a skill before it counts for a grade. Therefore, we provide students with many ongoing practice opportunities including homework and classwork, before we administer an assessment (a quiz or a test) for a grade. Homework is not graded, but is required of each student because of the important practice that it provides. In addition, we believe that some students will require more time to learn a skill and we allow time for this individualized development.
Mill Creek students are given until the end of the grading period (the quarter) to provide their final mastery of a skill. While all students will take the assessments (quizzes and tests) at the same time throughout the quarter, if students are not pleased with their scores or grades, they may meet with their teachers during Flex time to receive extra help. They may retake their quizzes or tests, provided they have sought this Flex time assistance and remediation work.
Finally, at Mill Creek Middle School, we believe in grading for learning. Our grades are based on the content we have taught, not on behaviors. Therefore, participation, preparedness, and other behavioral factors are handled through our school wide and class wide behavior management programs, not through grades. All students’ grades are a clear reflection of their mastery of the content. We adhere to the WCS Board policy grading scale of A=91-100, B=81-90, C=72-80, D=70-71, F=69 or below, and teachers will provide communication regarding which content standards contribute to each grading category in our electronic grading system.
There are two purposes for Flex Time.
First, it is an opportunity to provide students with unstructured choice time, provided the student is keeping up with their academic and behavioral responsibilities. Students with no missing assignments or homework, no course grades between 0% -71%, no summative assessment scores of “NY” (Not Yet), and no behavior referrals/disciplines are rewarded with the opportunity to choose their activity for 30 minutes preceding or following their grade level’s assigned lunch time! Flex offerings may include lunchtime sports/intramurals, silent study focus (a quiet room to do homework, by choice), clubs (National Junior Honor Society, book clubs, chess club,) activities (knitting, board games, yoga, etc.), student performances, and classroom “boost” time. Students not meeting the requirements will spend their Flex Time in Homework Club (HC).
The second purpose for Flex Time is related to our Academic Grading Policy, Grading for Learning. Students who would like to improve their grades may go to their classroom teachers for a “boost” session during Flex Time. Our teachers will provide tutoring to help students learn the content, and if a student meets the teacher’s boost tutoring requirements, the student may retake the quiz or test on which that content has been assessed.
Students must make their Flex Time selection at the beginning of the day and stay in that location for the entire Flex Time for that day. For safety and supervision reasons, switching Flex Time activities as Flex Time is in progress is not permitted.