• Parent info nights: Sept. 20 @ DOHS Gym Sept. 21 @ MMS Room 200Middle and high school families are invited to attend upcoming standards based grading information nights. Come learn how to log in to Empower and how to monitor student grades. Building principals and teachers will also be available to answer questions you may have.
    Please choose from the following days and times: September 20 at 5:00 p.m. at the Desert Oasis High School Gym or September 21 at 5:00 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. in room 200 at McFarland Middle School.  


  • En Español

    Select teachers at Othello High School, Desert Oasis High School, and McFarland Middle School are pilot testing standards based grading during the 2023-2024 school year. It is important for parents, students and their teachers to fully understand how standards-based grading measures student learning. Standards Based Grading will not impact your child's high school transcript, or impact their chances of being accepted to institutions of higher learning. School districts across Washington are beginning to implement standards-based grading. 

  • This document is a PDF copy of the presentation given to parents at our recent Empower Learning parent info nights. You can download it for easier viewing. 

If you are having trouble viewing the document, you may download the document.

Monitoring Student Progress

  • Parents will use a new portal called Empower to monitor student progress in classes that are testing standards-based grading. Skyward Family Access will continue to be used to access all other student data such as traditional grades and attendance. Training resources for parents to make the most of Empower are coming soon! The short video below shows how the Empower parent portal helps parents track student progress.

    Like Family Access, Empower will tell you if your student has late work in their classes, or if they're turning in work on time. But it will also allow parents to see whether their child is on-pace, ahead of pace, or behind pace. You can expand any subject and see the specific skills your child has been working on. 


Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why are teachers using Standards Based Grading?

  • Which schools are using Standards Based Grading?

  • How will I know which of my child’s teachers are using Standards Based Grading and which are not?

  • What if I have questions about Empower or Standards Based Grading?

  • How will this grading change affect my child’s high school transcripts and applications to colleges or universities?

  • How can a 3.0 score and a 4.0 score both equal an A on the high school transcript? Does this mean you are just giving out more “A” grades than before?

  • How does Standards Based Grading affect athletic eligibility?

  • How will late work be handled?

  • How long has the district been planning to change to Standards Based Grading?

  • What are proficiency scales?

  • Why do the .5, 1.0, and 1.5 proficiency scale descriptors refer to 3.0 level content?

  • What does it mean that the district is piloting this?

  • How are teachers being trained to do Standards Based Grading?