At WHS, records such as gradebooks, class attendance, and transcripts are computerized and available to instructors, parents, and students on a real-time basis. The computer automatically calculates each student's average based on inputted data and parameters. This system made it easy to maintain accurate records and keep students and parents informed. To keep students, their families, and myself aware of their ongoing progress, I updated the electronic gradebook regularly.
Download copies of my electronic grade books (with student names removed) here:
Block 1 grade book.xls (Biology class)
Block 2 grade book.xls (Anatomy & Physiology class)
Twice during the semester, I also printed out a progress report for each student, with missing assignments highlighted. Students were to have the progress reports signed and were given a deadline to turn in the missing work. This approach was successful in alerting students to improve their work ethic and bring up their grade. Without such explicit updates, many students do not check up on their grade and aren't aware that they need to work harder or submit a particular assignment. This approach also opened up doors of communication with some parents, who enjoyed being informed of their children's status and would start asking for even more regular updates.
I kept the electronic grade book up to date, but also kept a hard copy in case of technological failure (see image above). On paper, I could also mark absences in the same space as daily grades, which was very useful for seeing at a glance the connections between absence and performance. It also made it easier to inform and catch up students who have been absent on what they need to make up.