Richmond superintendent says students actually showed growth in learning

Posted at 6:15 PM, Aug 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-24 18:15:15-04

RICHMOND, Va. — Richmond Superintendent Jason Kamras is firing back with his initial analysis of SOL data arguing they show growth, after some school board members called the system's SOL results a "failure."

Kamras argues RPS students actually made tremendous growth on SOLs last year

The superintendent's data compares the Virginia Growth Assessment (VGA) that elementary school students took in the fall with the SOL they took in the spring.

The VGA is considered a pre-SOL test, and the fall VGA measured a student's knowledge of what they learned in their previous grade, according to the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) website.

Kamras's presentation shows elementary school students across the district showed growth between three and 30 percentage points in reading, depending on what school they attended.

For example, students at Fairfield Court Elementary School increased from a 14% to 28% pass rate in reading, while students at John B Cary went from a 34% pass rate to a 64% pass rate in reading.

In math, student growth was between two and 46%, depending on the school.

For example, at Swansboro Elementary School, 10% of students passed math in the fall, and 12% passed it in the spring — while at Broad Rock Elementary, 5% passed in the fall, and 38% passed in the spring.

Related: Richmond teacher 'insulted' by focus on poor SOL scores: 'It's very degrading'

Kamras also highlighted that RPS students actually outperformed the state in many subjects when you look at the data by subgroup.

Examples of subgroups include Black students, economically disadvantaged students and English-learner students.

However, he did admit that the system's weakest subject was science, where only white students outperformed the state.

And, he highlighted that Hispanic/Latino students and English-learner students saw the largest declines, and therefore require the greatest support going forward.

Click here to view the superintendent's full presentation to the school board Tuesday night.



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