The COVID Slide is Still Ongoing

Apr 14, 2023 | Schertz

Educators have been trying to figure out just how much students lose after a long break from school for more than a century. More recent studies have confirmed that academic progress slows during the summer for all children, resulting in what is known as the “Summer Slide” which we discussed last month.

Years later and the COVID slide has emerged and hasn’t stopped. Research suggests students still haven’t regained the academic ground they’ve lost in the disruptions of the pandemic, and many high school students will continue to struggle after graduation.

High school students lost on average the equivalent of 3.3 months in math even as schools continued to offer remote instruction through the worst of the pandemic. Students of all racial groups and across rural, suburban, and urban schools showed significant declines in test scores, ACT found, based on scores from about 600,000 students from nearly 4,000 schools in 38 states.

Experts believe mathematics achievement was more sensitive to pandemic-related schooling disruptions for a variety of reasons. Some believe it was more challenging for teachers to engage in effective math instruction via remote platforms coupled with the fact that many parents were less well-equipped or anxious about providing aid to their children with math, in a time when parent support was deemed more crucial as students learned from home. Further, a national survey from the Understanding Coronavirus in America study found that parents of K-12 students were significantly more concerned about their child’s math achievement suffering due to virtual or hybrid classes than any other subject.

Now that we’ve defined the problem, in the next blog, we’ll discuss the solution. So stay tuned!