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Teacher Guide for PowerSchool Gradebook Passback
Teacher Guide for PowerSchool Gradebook Passback

Sync graded points-based assessments to your PowerSchool Gradebook

Kendell Hunter avatar
Written by Kendell Hunter
Updated over a week ago

Gradebook Passback is available for districts that utilize PowerSchool as their student information system to transfer points-based assessments and scores nightly from Otus to PowerSchool.

Are you an administrator interested in setting up this feature for your team? Click the button below for more information.


Ensure Membership in PowerSchool Gradebook Passback Group

Ensure that you are a member of the PowerSchool Gradebook Passback teacher group in Otus. If you are not already a member of that group, please contact your district's Otus Admin or Main Admin to request to be added to the group:

💡 Tip: In order for grades to pass back to your SIS, the user who has assigned the assessment must be included in the PowerSchool Gradebook Passback teacher group. We recommend that any teacher, co-teacher, or administrator who may be assigning assessments are added to the PowerSchool Gradebook Passback teacher group in Otus.

Assessments assigned directly to a class from an Otus Administrator (who is not in your SIS) will not passback to the gradebook. This assessment should be assigned to the class by the teacher or co-teacher who are a member of the PowerSchool Gradebook Passback teacher group.


Create a Points-Based Assessment

Create an Otus assessment using a Points Grading Scale. Only assessments created using a Points Grading Scale will passback. If you select a Standards Based Grading Scale for your assessment, the data will not passback to PowerSchool. The image below illustrates how to select the correct Grading Scale when creating your assessment.

💡 Tip: the selected Assessment Type in Otus will be sent to a specific category in PowerSchool that has been defined by your administrators. Teachers can change the category in PowerSchool once the grade has been sent.

❗️Assessment titles should be 50 characters or less. If an assessment title is more than 50 characters, PowerSchool will not allow the assessment to passback.


Assign the Assessment

  • Specify a Due Date when assigning the assessment, as PowerSchool requires a Due Date for the scores to transfer. If you do not specify a Due Date, the Due Date sent to PowerSchool will be calculated by adding 7 days to the assessment creation or assigning date.

❗️Assignments with due dates outside of the current grading period will not passback. Please keep this in mind when approaching the end of a grading period.

  • Select “Include Score in Final Grade” for the scores to passback to PowerSchool. If the box below is not checked, the score will not passback to PowerSchool.

Plus (+) Assessments

When adding plus (+) assessments to the Otus gradebook, please note these slight differences from other types of assessments:

  • The "Include Score in Final Grade" is a toggle that must be toggled ON for the scores to passback.

  • The Submission Date is used to calculate a due date to send to PowerSchool. The due date will be calculated by adding 7 days to the submission date. As you approach the end of a grading period, be sure to set a submission date at least 7 days prior to the end of the grading period if you would like the scores to passback within the current grading period. It is permissible to have a submission date in the past.


Grade the Assessment

After the assessment is submitted by a student, questions that were set to auto-score will already have grades, but be sure to grade any ungraded items so that the assessment has a status of “Graded” in Otus. If you see a status of “Turned In,” that assessment score will not passback until all ungraded items are graded.

After all items in your assessment are graded, you can expect scores to passback with the nightly sync making the scores visible in PowerSchool the following day.

💡 Tip: The status of the assignment (e.g., Excluded, Excused, Missing, etc.) will not passback to PowerSchool. The assignment status will have to be manually adjusted in PowerSchool.


Additional Considerations

  • At this time, PowerSchool only supports the passback of points-based assessment scores and does not support the passback of standard scores.

  • Any weighting of scores needs to be done in PowerSchool; weighting in Otus does not passback.

  • Certain adjustments to your assessment in Otus will cause the assessment or score(s) to resend to PowerSchool.

    • Otus re-sends all scores if you make any of these adjustments in Otus:

      • Edit the assessment Title

      • Edit the assessment Type

      • Adjust any assessment Settings, e.g. "Include Score in Final Grade", "Allow Multiple Attempts", etc.

    • Otus re-sends individual score(s) if you edit the score(s) in Otus.

  • If you edit a score in PowerSchool but not in Otus, Otus will not overwrite the score in PowerSchool unless one of the re-send triggers above occurs.

Why aren't my grades showing up in PowerTeacher gradebook?

There are a few things to consider:

  • Check with your Otus Main Admin to ensure that you are in the grade passback teacher group.

  • A required district-level assessment category may be missing or not active in your PowerTeacher gradebook.

    • The Assessment Type in Otus will map to a PowerSchool district-level assignment category defined by your district administration. In your PowerTeacher gradebook, district-level categories are identified by the School House icon and they must be marked ACTIVE in your gradebook.

    • Check with your district Otus Admin to make sure all required categories are present and active in your PowerTeacher gradebook:

  • PowerSchool will reject scores if the assessment due date:

    • falls outside of an open grading period

    • occurs before the assessment assigned date

  • Otus sends grade information to PowerSchool each night. If you entered or modified the grade in Otus later in the evening, that change may have occurred after the sync already started.

  • It could be that the assessment has an open-ended item that needs to be graded before the assessment is considered fully graded.

  • If you haven't graded anything yet and the due date has not been reached, then Otus doesn't have anything to send yet.

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