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Educators hope to bridge education gap from C-19 pandemic period

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Posted at 4:13 PM, Aug 01, 2022

PHOENIX — Valley school leaders hope this year educators will be able to bridge the learning gap brought on during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Arizona State Board of Education, Helios Education Foundation, and the Arizona Department of Education met Monday to discuss the impact that COVID-19 had in the classroom.

The research found students in younger grades had greater impacts in the classroom than older grades, “Compared to the older grades, proficiency and growth data for the K-5 grades show a greater impact,” the report stated.

Data suggests that English language arts was impacted greatly, along with math, While both subject areas see large and broad impact across all demographic subgroups and achievement levels, overall impacts on students’ mathematics achievement were larger.

“The one thing that's different going into this year is that in our community morale is really high because we know to respond and react,” said Superintendent Quentin Boyce for the Roosevelt School District.

You can find more on the learning loss research here.

Along with learning loss, educators expressed concern for absences of teachers, finding substitutes and students, “We need to communicate the importance of kids being in school every day,” said Superintendent Jamie Sheldahl for the Yuma Elementary School District.

Educators also acknowledge that student enrollment declined across Arizona for the 2020-2021 school year, In particular, the data show greater pandemic-related decreases in enrollments in the elementary and middle school grade levels and especially in Kindergarten, Grade 5, and Grade 6, the report found.