Good to see you folks moving ahead with speed, but I must also say I am concerned about two thing I see in the Outcomes Technical Specification: 1) Outcomes no longer appearing in the gradebook, and 2) Outcomes no longer supporting scales. Perhaps I don't understand where this is going, but it seems likely to me that these two changes will make the Outcomes module virtually unusable for K-12 schools in the U.S.
The move is on in a very, very big way toward Standards Based Reporting and Assessment in the U.S. but the ususal approach is to assess and report student achievement on a scale - typically something like: 1 Not Present; 2 Area of Concern; 3 Progressing; 4 Mastered. I don't see how a pass/fail approach to data collection can support this model, nor how pass/fail can be used to meaningfully report student performance on essays or other performance based assessments. Also, in the end the teacher's assessment of a student's performance on such a scale (perhaps by looking at the mean, mode, median, most recent or a combination of these) IS the grade in the gradebook. I'm not seeing how outcome tracking can be separated from the gradebook.
I am attaching a short article by Thomas Guskey (one of the leaders in SBG in the U.S.) which provides a basic example of how Standards Based Reporting and Assessment is being implemented in U.S. schools.
I realize that standards or criteria based grading is being implemented differently around the world, but would hope the new Outcomes module will not exclude K-12 teachers and schools in the U.S.
All the best,