Hawaii is going to begin issuing "standards-based" report cards for its elementary students, which will replace the familiar letter grades with ME (meets with excellence), MP (meets proficiency), N (approaches) and U (well below), along with four pages of details parents are sure not to understand. It seems like progress to some people. It sounds like edubabble to me.
Say what you will about the old grading system, we all understand it. Everybody knows what you mean if you say so-and-so is just doing C work or gets an A for that report. Its part of our common language. And whatever words are used, people are still ranked according to their performance.