Colorado Schools Grading Policy

Overview of Colorado Grading Policy

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on Colorado’s grading policy! Whether you’re a student, parent, or educator, understanding the grading system in Colorado schools is essential for academic success. In this guide, we’ll break down the grading scales, mastery scales, and standards-based grading practices used in Colorado. Let’s dive in! 🎓

Grade Scale

In Colorado, the traditional letter grade scale is commonly used in schools. Here’s a breakdown of the grade scale:

Letter GradePercentage RangeDescription
D60-69%Needs Improvement
FBelow 60%Failing

Mastery Scale

Some Colorado schools use a mastery scale to assess student proficiency in specific skills or standards. The mastery scale focuses on the level of understanding and application of knowledge. Here’s a typical mastery scale:

Mastery LevelDescription
4Advanced Understanding and Application
3Proficient Understanding
2Basic Understanding
1Limited Understanding
0No Evidence of Understanding

Standards-Based Grading

Standards-based grading (SBG) is another approach used in Colorado schools. SBG focuses on students’ mastery of specific learning standards. Here’s how the Alaska standards-based grading scale applies to Colorado:

4Exceeds the Standard
3Meets the Standard
2Approaching the Standard
1Below the Standard
0No Evidence of Meeting the Standard


Here are the ten most frequently asked questions about Colorado’s grading policy:

  1. What is the standard grading scale in Colorado schools?
    • Most schools use a letter grade scale from A to F, with A being the highest.
  2. What does standards-based grading mean?
    • It assesses students’ proficiency in specific standards rather than overall subject performance.
  3. How does mastery scale differ from traditional grading?
    • Mastery scale focuses on students’ understanding and application of skills.
  4. Can students retake assessments to improve their mastery level?
    • Yes, many schools allow retakes to demonstrate improved understanding.
  5. How are report cards formatted with standards-based grading?
    • Report cards typically show students’ proficiency levels for each standard.
  6. Are there different grading policies for elementary, middle, and high schools?
    • Yes, grading policies can vary by educational level and district.
  7. How are final grades calculated in a standards-based system?
    • Final grades reflect the highest level of proficiency demonstrated.
  8. Do colleges accept standards-based grades?
    • Colleges understand and accept standards-based grades but may also look at traditional transcripts.
  9. What support is available for students struggling with their grades?
    • Schools provide various support services, including tutoring and additional resources.
  10. How can parents stay informed about their child’s progress?
    • Parents can use online portals, attend parent-teacher conferences, and communicate regularly with teachers.


Here are some helpful resources related to Colorado’s grading policy:

  1. Colorado Department of Education (CDE): Provides comprehensive information on state education policies and standards. CDE Website
  2. Local School District Websites: Each district may have specific grading policies and resources. Check your local district’s site for details.
  3. Parent-Teacher Associations (PTA): Offers support and resources for parents to stay involved in their child’s education.
  4. School Report Cards: Available on the CDE website, these report cards offer insights into school performance and grading standards.

Grading Policy for Schools in Colorado