Setting up the Terms for an individual School is likely one of the most important parts of beginning to work with the Gradebook. Once the Terms are set up for the year, they cannot be changed without data movement and any time there is data movement there is the possibility of lost data.
That being said, setting your Terms correctly based on your School's grading system needs to be in place before teachers begin entering their grades.
Any time you are changing any tab in the LMS Manager beyond the Schools tab, please make sure that you check to see which School you are editing in the upper right-hand corner. Even Support forgets at times!
For the "term"inology of schools, there are a few things we want to clarify:
Terms - A Term is the period of time a class meets; e.g., if the class meets for a semester or a trimester, that is a term. While schools will have many year-long classes, terms should correspond to the shortest run of an individual elective. If electives meet for one semester, there should be two terms: semester 1 and semester 2. Electives meet during one of these, while year-long classes meet for both. Note: The Term Key in LMS Manager should correspond to the "termID" in the school's SIS.
Marking Periods - Marking periods live within terms and should align with when schools would like to publish official report cards. A date range must be added to each marking period; assignment grades within the date range will count toward that marking period. Depending on your school, the term and marking period might have the same name. This is quite common with schools that have trimesters. Grading averages start over for each new marking period or term. So, if you want to have two quarters, but have a running average throughout those quarters, you would need to create a single semester and then run a progress report at the end of the first quarter.
Term Exams - Schools that have a school-wide "midterm" or "final exam" that do not impact any marking period grade, but should instead impact the overall term/year grade, must use the "term exam" feature. Note: Enabling this will add a "term exam" button for teachers in their classes. Teachers will be able to create and grade and exam in their regular gradebook, but this grade will not count toward the overall Marking Period average.
Grade weighting options
Site administrators can set weighting of different marking periods for the entire school (upper, middle, lower, etc.). They can also allow teachers to adjust their own weightings by selecting the checkbox "Allow teachers to customize weighting per gradebook."
If this option is enabled, teachers can adjust these settings in their individual group spaces. Each teacher will navigate to their group space, click the Gradebook tab, then select the Settings menu. Once there, at the bottom of the menu there will be an option for Custom Grade Weighting. Then the marking periods will appear so that the teacher can enter the appropriate percentages. These percentages must equal 100%, as they are required to do in the LMS Manager.