Lunenburg students outperform state average in Math SOL tests

Published 9:35 am Thursday, September 1, 2022

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LUNENBURG – Despite school closures during the COVID-19 pandemic, Central High School (CHS) students at Lunenburg County Public Schools (LCPS) outperformed the state SOL average pass rates in math for 2021-22 with a rate of 90%. 

The same couldn’t be said, however, statewide. Across Virginia, only 66% of students passed math, compared to 82% pre-pandemic. Only 65% of students in the state passed science, compared to 81% in the 2018-19 school year. There were also problems with history, as just 66% of Virginia students passed, compared to 80% two years ago. 

Now in each case, the statewide numbers were better than last year, when the majority of tests saw 60% or fewer pass. But state officials say it’s clear there’s work to do. 

“The bottom line is that in-person instruction matters,” said Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow. “We can see the difference our teachers made once they were reunited with their students in their classrooms. I want to thank all of our teachers for everything they did last year to begin what will be a multiyear recovery effort.”

Learning loss apparent

When it came to LCPS across the board, School Superintendent Charles Berkley Jr.  said the learning loss that students experienced during the 2020-21 school year was apparent in students.

“The decline in scores can be attributed to the loss of learning and the instructional time lost from the classroom among teachers and students due to protocols followed during the pandemic.” Berkley said. “We are working hard in Lunenburg County Public Schools to help our students overcome the learning loss that occurred during the Coronavirus Pandemic where face to face instruction and education was not available for students.”

Assessing individual students 

Berkley said LCPS will be focusing on addressing the achievement gaps for all students and utilizing data as a tool in its efforts to get every child where they need to be.

Additionally, reading and math support personnel have been employed to provide additional support during the school day to work on deficit skills with students in the areas of Reading and Math. 

According to Berkley CHS student math scores were increased due to remediation during summer school, afterschool, and during school.

“Moving forward students will continue to receive targeted remediation during school hours, after-school programs, and summer programs.” Berkely said.  “We believe with students back in the schools, we will continue to see growth this school year as we did last year which eventually we will have all students reaching and meeting the standards and showing growth in reading and math as well as science and history. When the state accreditation process factors in student growth from the beginning of last school year to now, we are confident that the scores will show growth and improvement.”

The 2021-2022 school year marked the return to in-person learning for all 132 Virginia school divisions and the return to normal levels of student participation in the state testing program.