The SC Department of Education (SCDE) and SC Education Oversight Committee (EOC) recently released the 2022 Report Cards. This was the first report card version to contain grades since 2019.
The report shows that Laurens District 55 has consistently lower percentages of graduate cohort students who are college and/or career ready than those enrolled at Clinton High School. 65.5% of those enrolled in CHS’s graduating cohort are college or career ready, while only 52.2% of those at Laurens District 55 High School meet the same criteria.
Similarly, Laurens School District 55 reports that only 30.1% of their students met or exceeded the SC Ready English Language Arts test (reading and writing). This figure is significantly lower than the Laurens School District 56 report of 39.6% and the state report of 46.6%. However, all of these scores still indicate that less than half of the state’s applicants passed.
The same trend is true for SC Ready’s math section report, showing 22.0% met or exceeded at Laurens School District 55, 35.7% for Laurens School District 56, and 38.9% for the state.
“One of the reasons our scores differ from District 55 is that although we were both closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year due to COVID, we had numerous meetings with our community and our parents over this summer and have made the decision in the fall of 2020 to return to school,” explained Dr. Brenda Schantz, District 56 Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction. “We had a virtual option for parents, but we didn’t do a hybrid. We brought our students back 180 days face-to-face, which helped us.”
“Having face-to-face teachers and students engaged in their own learning is what helps students learn.”
The same testing pattern applies to the Algebra 1 end-of-course assessment; however, the End of Course English Assessment shows that Laurens School District 55 has 8.7% more successful students.
Both districts have a graduation rate of about 80 percent, only slightly lower than the state’s 83.8 percent rate.
Schantz explains that, for Clinton High School, the percentage of students involved in extracurricular activities is directly correlated to the graduation rate. She believes that this involvement helps every student find their place in the school and excel in all respects because of it.
“I salute the efforts of South Carolina educators and students,” said EOC Executive Director Matthew Ferguson. “These results exceeded all expectations of what was thought possible while experiencing the disruptions of COVID.”
Ferguson also urged community members to use the 2022 release as a way to help schools and students, saying it’s an “accountability” and “accessibility” tool.
Schantz says that while she is happy with District 56’s trends, she wants the district to be above the state average and will continue to implement Individual Education Plans and a community-based approach to education. learning until it happens.
“We have worked very hard with our principals and teachers over the past six years to ensure that we consider individualizing instruction for our students through small group instruction and to ensure that we know where each child’s weak point is and where we can help them excel,” Schantz said. “Our status test is just one example of the data we collect, and we’re able to take these pedagogical decisions for each child on how to help them return based on a number of data. This is what has helped us to improve our academic success. ”
The report also published information on school climates, produced taking into account feedback and surveys from students and teachers.
District 55 scored 5.31/10 on overall school climate. District 56 scored 6.67/10. The state’s score falls in the middle of these two results at 6.33/10.
The score is then divided into two general categories: school climate factors, which include educational orientation, working conditions, safety, etc., and student and teacher participation.
District 55 scored below the state average on all assets in the “school climate factors” category. District 56 scored above the state average on those same assets.
Contrary to the previous trend, District 55 scored above the state average on all assets in the “participation rate” category, indicating that students and teachers are likely to be more engaged in this district than in the rest of the state. District 56, however, scored below the state average on both category assets.
To view the full report, visit www.screportcards.com.
(District 55 did not respond when asked to comment on this story)