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Elementary Otus Report Card

Elementary Otus Report Card Pilot Information

During the 2023-2024 school year, Elementary homeroom teachers will have the option to volunteer to participate in a Report Card Pilot using our Learning Management System, Otus, to generate a new and improved standards-based report card. Parents/guardians will still be getting the traditional report card for PE, Art, and Music. A secondary report card will be sent home for all other content areas following the standards based model. This secondary report card will not contain scores or letter grades, but instead inform you of your child's progress using a mastery scale. In order to meet expectations on the identified standards for each content area, a student must consistently and independently demonstrate mastery of each of the elements (progression of skills and knowledge) that make up the learning standard.

This new report card provides insight into how your child is progressing on the identified Illinois learning standards. Students are expected to master the learning standards by the end of the school year at increasing levels of complexity. For example, a student in 5th grade may demonstrate mastery of quoting details from a text for explicit and implicit meaning, but then only approach the standard in a subsequent trimester in a text that has increased complexity. Another example is that in kindergarten, students are expected to count to 100. Counting is practiced all year and increases in complexity (e.g. in Trimester 1, students count to 50, in Trimester 2, students count to 75, etc.). For more information regarding the standards and curricular resources specific to District 112, can be found here.

Please reach out to your child’s teacher to see if they are piloting the report card this year or with any questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a standards-based grading system?

  • A standards-based grading system, or mastery based grading, evaluates student progress towards mastering specific learning targets, called standards. The Illinois Learning Standards, as set by the Illinois State Board of Education, “establish expectations for what all students should know and be able to do in each subject at each grade level. The standards promote student-driven learning and the application of knowledge to real world situations to help students develop deep conceptual understanding. Intentionally rigorous, the Illinois Learning Standards prepare students for the challenges of college and career.” (ISBE, 2022,

What is the purpose of a standards-based report card?

  • A standards-based report card provides a clearer picture of a student’s learning progress on identified learning standards. Rather than utilizing a traditional points-based grading system, a standard-based report card gives a detailed view of student performance, including strengths and weaknesses, on particular skills. A standards-based grading system provides more detail than a traditional points-based grading system, as it communicates the specific skills and/or knowledge that a student needs to meet a learning standard. This provides a powerful tool for both educators and families to communicate effectively regarding how to best meet the needs of students in each content area.

What is the standards based grading scale in District 112?

  • A student’s performance on a series of assessments are utilized to determine a student’s overall mastery level. The standards-based grading scale in District 112 is the following:

Meeting Standard

The student is able to independently and consistently demonstrate mastery of each element within the learning standard. 

Approaching Standard

The student is able to independently and consistently demonstrate mastery of the majority of the elements within the learning standard. 

Not Meeting Standard

The student is able to independently demonstrate mastery of some of the elements within the learning standard. 

My child was meeting the standard in trimester 1, but in trimester 2 is approaching the standard. How is this possible?

  • Students are expected to master the identified standards by the end of the school year. Some learning standards appear throughout the school year in multiple trimesters and this report card shows where a student is performing at this point in time. As the year goes on, the standards that repeat become more rigorous and students that demonstrate mastery of a standard earlier in the year may not necessarily demonstrate mastery in later trimesters when the rigor and complexity increases. This may lead to students demonstrating mastery on a standard in earlier units of instruction and then approaching or not meeting the standard in later units when the rigor and/or complexity of the standard is increased to the end of year expectation. 

Will my student still receive teacher comments on their report card?

  • Yes. Individualized feedback and comments are an important part of standards-based grading. Effective feedback is one of the most impactful factors for increasing student achievement. One of the benefits of using a standards-based grading system is the degree to which feedback can be clear and actionable when provided in relation to the specific learning standards and skills. 

Where can I learn more about the standards that are taught, assessed, and reported for each grade level?

  • This information can be accessed via the Teaching and Learning Department page on the North Shore School District 112 website. The “Curriculum Overview” page provides information regarding the Illinois State Learning Standards required for each grade level. In addition, identified priority standards (focus standards) selected by the District 112 staff are available for each grade level and content area.


Check out this additional FAQ with answers to questions parents/guardians asked after the trimester 1 report cards!


Otus Standards-Based Report Card Video Overview (English)

Boleta de calificaciones de Otus - Video informativo para padres y tutores (espaƱol)