NORTH CAROLINA STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION
Policy Manual

Policy Identification
Priority:
  Globally Competitive Students
Category:  Miscellaneous Graduation Policies
Policy ID Number:  GCS-L-004

Policy Title:  Policy outlining standards to be incorporated into the electronically generated high school transcript

Current Policy Date:  08/07/2014

Other Historical Information:  Previous board dates: 12/01/1994, 09/13/2001, 02/05/2004, 07/01/2004, 11/04/2004,06/04/2009,10/01/2009

Statutory Reference:  GS 116-11(10a)

Administrative Procedures Act (APA) Reference Number and Category:  


1.     The Department of Public Instruction shall maintain a transcript system, and the local school administrative units shall use that system to produce standardized transcripts in an automated format. The standardized transcript shall include:

·       grade point average (GPA),

·       class rank,

·       end-of-course test scores, and

·       uniform course information including course code, course name, credits earned toward graduation, and credits earned for admission to an institution of higher education.

 

2.     Students shall receive both an un-weighted GPA that reflects no additional weighting for advanced courses and a weighted GPA that reflects additional quality points for advanced coursework. In accordance with General Statute 116-11 (10a), grade point average values and class rank shall be calculated by a standard method devised by the University of North Carolina and NC Community College systems.

 

3.     Grade point average calculations are based upon standardization of academic course levels, weighting of course grades, and grading scales.

3.1.  Academic course levels and associated weights are defined as follows:

3.1.1.   Standard courses – Course content, pace and academic rigor follow standards specified by the North Carolina Standard Course of Study (NCSCoS). Standard courses provide credit toward a high school diploma and require the end-of-course test for those courses identified as such in the NC accountability program. Quality points for the GPA calculation are assigned according to the standard 4.0 scale and receive no additional quality points.

3.1.2.     Honors courses - Course content, pace and academic rigor place high expectations on the student, demanding greater independence and responsibility. Such courses are more challenging than standard level courses and are distinguished by a difference in the depth and scope of work required to address the NCSCoS. These courses provide credit toward a high school diploma and require the end-of-course test for those courses identified as such in the NC accountability program. An honors review process shall be followed, as outlined in the latest edition of the North Carolina Honors Course Implementation Guide. The state course weighting system awards the equivalent of one (1) quality point to the grade earned in Honors courses. Beginning in school year 2015-16, the weighting for Honors courses shall be one-half (.5) of a quality point.

3.1.3.     Advanced Placement/International Baccalaureate (AP/IB) courses - Course content, pace and academic rigor are considered college-level as determined by the College Board or the International Baccalaureate (IB) program and are designed to enable students to earn high scores on the AP or IB test, potentially leading to college credit. These courses provide credit toward a high school diploma and require an EOC in cases where the AP/IB course is the first course taken by a student in a subject where an EOC is required by the NC accountability program. The state weighting system awards the equivalent of two (2) quality points to the grade earned in an AP/IB course. Beginning in school year 2015-16, the weight for AP/IB courses shall be one (1) quality point.

3.1.4.     College courses (“dual enrollment”) - Course content, pace and academic rigor are, by definition, college-level for these courses. College courses, which may be delivered by a community college, public university or private college or university, provide credit toward a high school diploma and may satisfy a graduation requirement or provide an elective course credit. The state weighting system adds the equivalent of one (1) quality point to the grade earned in community college courses included on the most recent Comprehensive Articulation Agreement Transfer List, and for courses taught at four-year universities and colleges.

 

4.     Courses eligible for weights include higher-level high school courses that fall into one of the following categories:

4.1.  Honors sections of standard-level academic courses, including NC Virtual Public School courses and other on-line courses, that are in accordance with the philosophy, rubric, procedures, guidelines, and standards for curriculum, instruction, and assessment as described in the North Carolina Honors Course Implementation Guide.  Such courses are assigned additional quality points in accordance with section 3.1.2 above; it is not necessary to offer a standard level of a course to offer an honors level.

4.2.  Pre-calculus, non-AP/IB calculus, mathematics courses beyond the level of calculus, and world language courses beyond the second-year level are considered inherently advanced and are assigned Honors-level weighting in accordance with section 3.1.2 above.

4.3.  Arts education courses meeting the standards for proficient and advanced dance, music, theatre arts, and visual arts are assigned Honors-level weighting in accordance with section 3.1.2 above.

4.4.  Project Lead the Way courses approved for college credit are assigned college-level weighting in accordance with section 3.1.4 above.

 

5.     High schools shall use one of two grading scales – one standard and one augmented. The conversion of grades to quality points is standardized and made equivalent under each option. Implicit in each option is a conversion of percentage grades to letter grades according to the following widely used scale: 93-100 = A; 85-92 = B; 77-84 = C; 70-76 = D; < 69 = F. Grades and the corresponding number of quality points are shown below for each of the two options.

5.1.  Standard scale – Option 1 – Letter grades without pluses and minuses

 

A = 4.0

B = 3.0

C = 2.0

D = 1.0

F = 0.0

WF = 0.0

FF = 0.0

WP = 0.0

INC = 0.0

AUD = 0.0

P  = 0.0

 

 

5.2.  Standard scale – Option 2 – Numeric Grades

 

93-100 = 4.0

85-92 = 3.0

77-84 = 2.0

70-76 = 1.0

< 69 = 0.0

WF = 0.0

FF = 0.0

WP = 0.0

INC = 0.0

AUD = 0.0

P  = 0.0

 

 

5.3.  Augmented scale – Option 1 – Letter grades with pluses and minuses

 

A+ = 4.000

A = 4.000

A- = 3.670

B+ = 3.333

B = 3.000

B- = 2.667

C+ = 2.333

C = 2.000

C- = 1.667

D+ = 1.333

D = 1.000

D- = 0.667

F = 0.000

WF = 0.000

FF = 0.000

WP = 0.000

INC = 0.000

AUD = 0.000

P = 0.00

 

 

 

 

 

 

5.4.  Augmented scale – Option 2 – Numeric Grades

 

100 = 4.000

99 = 4.000

98 = 4.000

97 = 4.000

96 = 4.000

95 = 3.875

94 = 3.750

93 = 3.625

92 = 3.500

91 = 3.375

90 = 3.250

89 = 3.125

88 = 3.000

87 = 2.875

86 = 2.750

85 = 2.625

84 = 2.500

83 = 2.375

82 = 2.250

81 = 2.125

80 = 2.000

79 = 1.875

78 = 1.750

77 = 1.625

76 = 1.500

75 = 1.375

74 = 1.250

73 = 1.125

72 = 1.000

71 = 1.000

70 = 1.000

< 69 = 0.000

WF = 0.000

FF = 0.000

WP = 0.000

INC = 0.000

 

 

AUD = 0.000

P = 0.00

 

 

 

6.     Elementary schools and middle schools are allowed to use grading systems approved by their local boards of education. 

6.1.  It is recommended that local boards of education base their elementary and middle school grading scales on the following widely used scale: 93-100 = A; 85-92 = B; 77-84 = C; 70-76 = D; < 69 = F.

6.2.  Local boards of education may also choose to use a letter-based scale such as the following: S (Satisfactory), N (Needs Improvement), U (Unsatisfactory), PR (Promoted), RE (Retained)

7.     In accordance with GS 116-11 (10a), each student’s official class rank shall be listed on the standardized transcript.

7.1.  The official class rank shall be calculated using the weighted grade point average in which quality points are provided for passing grades in standard, Honors, AP/IB, and college-level courses according to the weighting system defined in sections 3 and 4 above.

7.2.  Local education agencies may re-calculate class rank for local purposes such as determination of valedictorian, salutatorian, and other graduation honors. Such re-calculations may be used for local purposes only, and the official class rank provided on the standardized transcript shall not be altered.