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Secondary

Communicating Student Learning

Over the last few years, BC’s educational curriculum underwent an important change. The redesigned curriculum will provide students with necessary skills for their future. To support the redesigned curriculum, a new approach to assessment and reporting is being implemented called Communicating Student Learning or CSL.

A guiding principle for Communicating Student Learning is to focus on providing information that advances learning rather than focusing on measuring learning. The approach helps students and families answer three reflective questions: 

  • Where is the student now? 
  • Where are they going? 
  • How do they get there?

Reporting is part of an overall approach to assessment and communication that aims to provide a more complete picture of how students are doing at school and how their learning is developing. Through active participation in the assessment process, students are provided with, and reflect upon, meaningful information and feedback about their learning, so they are more empowered to reach their learning goals. Families have more involvement as partners in the learning process, which provides opportunities for them to find out about the most effective ways to support and improve the student’s learning. 

Report card format 

For all Grade 8 students and some Grade 9 students, changes in how parents receive information about their child’s learning include a strengths-based reporting focus using a proficiency scale for each subject area and written comments. Students in these courses do not receive letter grades.  

In the 2021-2022 school year, all Grade 9 reporting of student learning will use the proficiency scale. 

Student proficiency scale (in relation to grade level expectations): 

  • BEGINNING to acquire knowledge, skills, strategies and processes 
  • DEVELOPING the ability to apply knowledge, skills, strategies and processes 
  • APPLYING knowledge, skills, strategies and processes consistently 
  • EXTENDING knowledge, skills, strategies and processes creatively and strategically. 
Grade 8 courses  Grade 9 courses* Grade 10-12 courses
  • Student proficiency scale (BEGINNING, DEVELOPING, APPLYING, EXTENDING) for each subject area  AND 
  • Written comments   AND 
  • Work habits (based on several variables that may include level of effort: G=Good, S=Satisfactory, N=Not Satisfactory) 

One of the following options *please check with your school for which model is used: 

  • Student proficiency scale OR 
  • Letter grade   OR 
  • Percentage  AND  
  • Written comments   AND  
  • Work habits (based on several variables that may include level of effort: G=Good, S=Satisfactory, N=Not Satisfactory) 
  • Percentages   AND  
  • Letter grades  AND 
  • Written comments   AND 
  • Work habits (based on several variables that may include level of effort: G=Good, S=Satisfactory, N=Not Satisfactory) 

Reporting schedule 

With changes made to the BC curriculum, assessment and reporting also had to change. A key part of Communicating Student Learning is ongoing communication with families about a student’s learning. All secondary students will receive two formal report cards for each course – one at the mid-point, and one at the end of the course – regardless of the duration of the course. This includes courses running on a quarterly schedule this 2020-2021 school year. In addition to report cards, other informal communications about student learning may include three-way (student, parent, teacher) student-led conferences, parent-teacher meetings, digital portfolio reviews, student reflections on their work, and telephone conversations. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, conferences and meetings are virtual. 

In the 2020-2021 school year, most secondary courses are following a quarterly model. This schedule allows learning groups to be maintained and minimizes a student’s number of close contacts at school. In the quarterly schedule, students take two classes per ten-week period

While most courses follow the quarterly schedule, others continue to follow a linear or semester schedule, due to their nature (such as Band, Skills, International Baccalaureate, Advanced Placement, Yearbook). 

Given the compressed timeframe of quarterly courses, there is an essential requirement for ongoing communication between students, families and teachers.   

Please refer to the tables for dates of report cards depending on course schedule: 

Quarter 

Start/End date 

Mid-quarter report 

 Final report 

1 

Sep 14 – Nov 17 

Oct 9 – 16 

Nov 18 - 24 

2 

Nov 18 – Feb 3 

Jan 4 – 8 

Feb 4 - 10 

3 

Feb 4 – April 23 

Mar 11 – 31 

Apr 27 - 30 

4 

Apr 27 – Jun 29 

May 28 – Jun 4 

Jun 28 - 29 


Semester 

Start/End date 

 Mid-semester (interim) report 

Final semester report 

1 

Sep 14 – Feb 3 

Nov 18 – 24 

Feb 4 - 10 

2 

Feb 4 – Jun 29 

Apr 27 – 30 

Jun 28 – 29  


Linear Reporting Schedule 

Start/End Date 

interim report (mandatory) 

mid-year report 

interim report 

(Discretionary) 

final report 

Full Year 

Sep 14 – Jun 29 

Nov 18 – 24 

Feb 4 - 10 

Apr 27 – 30 

Jun 28 - 29 


The focus of the update in assessment and reporting practices provides a regular and ongoing basis that allows both learners and families to gauge where children are in their learning, what they are working toward, and, the ways in which that learning can be supported. 

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