How do I fix the error “Invalid Course Letter Grade?” on the ISBE Student Course Assignment?

When running the Student Course Assignment, you may see an “Invalid Course Letter Grade” error in one or more rows of the export preview. This error indicates that the Course Final Letter Grade being submitted in that row does not conform to ISBE’s expectations. You can configure the grade codes on the grading scale and on special grade codes.

Why would there be an invalid letter grade in the export?

How to correct Invalid Course Letter Grade

Why would there be an invalid letter grade in the export?

The Course Final Letter Grade in the Student Course Assignment export does not necessarily match the letter grade on the report card because, while you can customize your local letter grades, the state requires that you submit only grade codes from their predefined list. Therefore, every traditional letter grade and special grade code should be linked to a state grade code.

There are two common causes of the Invalid Letter Grade error:

  1. No state code is associated with the letter grade.

If no state code has been linked to the letter grade on the grading scale or on the special grade code, then the letter grade itself is exported. For example, if a student received a plus sign (+) as their letter grade, that won’t match to anything ISBE’s system recognizes.

  1. The state code is not valid for the student’s grade level

Some state grade codes are only valid for certain grade levels. For example, a high school may indicate that a student has passed the course with a P. However, as of the writing of this article, the P code is only valid for grades K-8. For up-to-date information on the rules and restrictions for each grade code, view ISBE’s Data Elements and Validations for the Student Course Assignment file.

How to correct Invalid Course Letter Grade

When you see the message “Invalid Letter Grade,” you must update the state code linked to the letter grade that the student received on the report card or replace it with a different letter grade that has the correct state code. To update your state codes, edit your traditional grading scales and special grade codes. ISBE’s list of acceptable codes can be found on the Data Elements and Validations page, in the Student Course Assignment section.

To edit your traditional grading scales:

  • Go to (School District) Admin Main > Grading Scales > edit
  • Edit the letter grade state code and choose an appropriate State Code

To edit your special grade codes:

  • Go to (School District) Admin Main > Grade Reporting > Special Grade Codes
  • Edit the special grade code and choose an appropriate State Code

Once the state codes have been updated, re-submit the Student Course Assignment and verify that the Invalid Course Letter Grade error no longer appears.

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