Enrolling, Assessments and Grading Information


In addition to on-going assessment which takes place in the classrooms, we participate in the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) assessments each year. Students in grades 3, 4 and 5 are administered the Maryland School Assessment ( MSA) to meet compliance with the No Child Left Behind Act. Parents receive individual results for their children during the fall. Students in Grades 3 -5 are also administered the Measures of Academic Progress in Reading ( MAP-R) during the fall, winter, and spring. Second grade students participate in the Terra Nova Test of Basic Skills (TN2) in March. Kindergarten, first and second grade students participate in the MCPS Early Childhood Assessment Program (MCPSAP-Reading) during the fall, winter and spring. The MAP-R and MCPSAP assessments are used to provide teachers with accurate data to ensure that all students are receiving instruction on their specific level. Second grade students are globally screened in the spring for identification in the gifted and talented program.

Enrichment/gifted and Talented Programming

All students are given the opportunity to become involved in enrichment activities offered by classroom teachers. Identified students are provided with a differentiated program that may include accelerated instruction, enrichment activities, regrouping with academic peers, and specialized projects or interest groups. Teachers have received training in the William and Mary Language Arts Program, Junior Great Books, and the use of Hands on Equations.

Enrolling Students

New students are enrolled at the school by having parents complete enrollment forms at the school office. Immunization information, a copy of a birth certificate, a social security number, and proof of residency for all students new to Bells Mill must be on file at the school before the children can attend school.

Grading and Reporting

All elementary schools will continue to report grades based on grade-level expectations in Grades 1–5. Teachers in Grades 1–5 will continue to report other important information about a student’s effort and behavior as Learning Skills separately from the academic grade.Our school is one of 19 schools that is field-testing the electronic standards-based report card in Grades 1, 2, & 3. These report cards provide information, using numbers rather than letter grades, to report student progress. The numbers represent levels of proficiency.
4 - Demonstrates complete understanding
3 - Demonstrates general understanding
2 - Demonstrates developing understanding
1 - Demonstrates minimal understanding

Bells Mill has implemented the MCPS Standards-Based Grading and Reporting Program. To learn more about it, watch this informational video.

Report Cards

Report cards are distributed four times a year, at the end of each of the nine-week grading periods. The report cards are sent home with students in November, February, and April, and they are mailed home in June. Kindergarten students receive a report card at the end of each semester.