3rd-grade math, reading proficiency expected to plummet in Tenn. after pandemic impacts schools

Education officials say they’re concerned about the effect of the pandemic on children’s opportunity to learn,
Tennessee Governor Bill Lee
Tennessee Governor Bill Lee(WVLT News)
Published: Sep. 23, 2020 at 4:42 PM EDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Tennessee education experts said they expect to see a 65 percent decrease in third-grade math proficiency in the state following the pandemic.

A major drop in reading proficiency is also expected.

Media Briefing - 9/23

Media Briefing - 9/23

Posted by Gov. Bill Lee on Wednesday, September 23, 2020

“It’s very hard to teach a child to read,” said Tennessee Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn. “It’s even harder to teach a child to read through a computer screen.”

Officials also mentioned that special needs students are struggling under the new learning system.

Lee said he wanted to focus on education during his Wednesday briefing after the release of new data on the importance of education for a child’s future.

Lee said “thank you” to superintendents and school boards for working to overcome education challenges created by the pandemic and that only “7-8 schools out of 1800 have needed to implement partial closures," due to COVID-19.

“I think what’s most important is that we have an assessment of our students and we ought to make sure we know where our students are.”

Schwinn said the new projections come from data released by schools across the state.

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