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Board Presented Mid-Year Academic Data

12 February 2021

HCS- At Monday night's board of education meeting, the board was given a presentation from Dr. Ron Dodson on mid-year academic data.

That presentation can be found here.

Despite all of the challenges and hardships we've experienced, we have not lost very much ground overall. Our students are only 1% behind where they were in January of 2020 before the pandemic hit the United States. They are 9% behind in mathematics, but we know that two thirds of that loss happened in the last nine-weeks of the 2019-20 school year when everyone was sent home with very little preparation.

To have single digit learning losses in the face of all that has happened speaks volumes about the quality, resilience, and determination of our teachers. We are not taking anything away from the nurses and doctors who have been the front line soldiers in this pandemic, but our teachers are also heroes who need to be celebrated when it becomes possible to do so.

We know that students learn best when they come to school every day, when they feel safe, when they aren't hungry, and when they can interact directly with their teachers and with peers. The COVID-19 pandemic has shaken the foundation of every one of those conditions. 28% of our students missed 2 or more weeks of school in the first semester, and 30% of our employees also lost 2 or more weeks due to quarantine. In any other year, those statistics alone would be devastating, but we also have families out of work who are skipping meals or worried about making mortgage or rent payments.

In the first semester, our in-person learners spent 43% of time at home learning remotely due to high levels of community spread. So, kids (and teachers) are missing a lot of school, some kids are coming to school hungry and uncertain about their family's security, and they have had less daily interaction with teachers and peers.

We are exploring new ideas and opportunities to fill any learning gaps. We have more students now who need intervention, and that intervention involves deeper knowledge holes and larger skill gaps. We have invited our schools and employees to submit proposals that will be studied, and we will hopefully use some of these new ideas to add to our intervention toolbelt for the hard times ahead.

For more curriculum related questions, please click here.