This website/blog was created in order to support teachers, administrators, and other educators in making the transition to Mastery Learning and Grading. There are a variety of resources available on this site but if you are interested in scheduling in-person PD or discussing other support options, please contact Mastery Learning and Grading Instructional Coaches:

Christopher Grounds: christopher.grounds@lausd.net

Melissa Guice: mjg7290@lausd.net

Roseanne Hill: rmh9976@lausd.net

The authors of this website include:

Derrick Chau, Ph.D. – Dr. Chau is the Senior Executive Director of P-12 Education. During his career, he has been a teacher, education researcher, principal, and district office administrator. He embarked on this effort to improve grading practices as a principal and has now supported over a dozen schools with this transformation.

Christopher Grounds – Chris Grounds is currently a Mastery Learning and Grading Instructional Coach in the Division of Instruction with LAUSD. In this position, he supports schools throughout the district in building capacity around Mastery Learning and Grading. Previously he worked as a CCSS Math Facilitator in ISIC, supporting nine high schools, primarily working with ILTs to build their capacity to provide instructional leadership at their school sites. Prior to that, he worked as a teacher and lead teacher for seven years. He began working on shifting his own grading practices as a teacher and has continued to support the schools he works with in making this shift over the past several years.

Melissa Guice – Melissa Guice is currently a Mastery Learning Instructional Coach in the Division of Instruction with LAUSD supporting interested schools and educators in learning about and implementing Mastery Learning and Grading.  Previously, Melissa was an LAUSD CCSS Literacy Facilitator supporting nine high schools in making the shift to Common Core instruction.  She has worked as a literacy coach, a Title III coach, an ELA and an EL teacher.  In all these capacities, she worked to support students in growing their literacy skills.  While her grading practices have changed over time, it was her experiences as a continuation high school teacher, as a mother, and her work with Dr. Chau which has most informed her understanding of how shifting grading practices complements the Common Core shifts in assessment, instruction, and planning.

Lavon Flowers – Lavon is a Least Restrictive Environment Specialist in the Los Angeles Unified School District. As an LRE, she supports schools with implementing effective special education supports for students. She has wealth of experience supporting schools with integrating students with disabilities into the general education setting throughout LAUSD. She has worked with integrated schools in shifting grading practices to meet the needs of all learners in diverse classrooms.


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