San Marcos Unified School District Grading Policy

Grading Scale

San Marcos Unified School District uses a standards-based grading system for elementary education (TK-5) and a traditional letter grading system for secondary education (6-12).

Elementary Grading Scale (TK-5):

  • 4 – Exceeds Standard
  • 3 – Meets Standard
  • 2 – Approaching Standard
  • 1 – Below Standard

Secondary Grading Scale (6-12):

  • A – 90-100%
  • B – 80-89%
  • C – 70-79%
  • D – 60-69%
  • F – Below 60%

Grading Policies

Elementary Schools (TK-5):

  • Standards-Based Report Cards: Grades reflect students’ progress towards meeting the Common Core State Standards.
  • Continuous Assessment: Teachers use various assessment methods, including observations, quizzes, tests, and projects to evaluate students’ understanding and skills.
  • Parent-Teacher Conferences: Regular meetings to discuss student progress, strengths, and areas for improvement.

Secondary Schools (6-12):

  • Letter Grades: Reflect cumulative performance in coursework, including homework, tests, projects, and participation.
  • Grade Point Average (GPA): Calculated based on letter grades and used for class ranking and college admissions.
  • Honors and AP Courses: Weighted grades to reflect the increased difficulty of these courses.


Q: How often are report cards issued?
A: Report cards are issued three times a year for elementary students and at the end of each semester for secondary students.

Q: Can students retake tests or redo assignments to improve their grades?
A: Policies on retakes and redos vary by teacher and school. Parents and students should check with individual teachers for specific guidelines.

Q: How are parents informed of their child’s progress?
A: In addition to report cards, progress reports are sent home mid-semester, and parents can access grades and attendance through the district’s online portal.

Q: What support is available for students struggling with their grades?
A: The district offers various support services, including tutoring, counseling, and after-school programs to help students improve their academic performance.

Q: How are students with special needs graded?
A: Students with special needs receive accommodations as outlined in their Individualized Education Plans (IEPs), and their progress is assessed based on their modified curriculum and goals.

If you need more detailed information or further customization, feel free to ask!