By Will Fairless
The Lee County School Board heard a report by Brad Hunter on the adverse effects of COVID-19 on grade school students and on how Lee County schools will attempt to overcome those in the coming year during its July 14 meeting. The board also approved their Tentative Path to Reopening Schools (to read more about that plan, turn to page B1).
Hunter cited a 2020 study from the NWEA (formerly known as the Northwest Evaluation Association) that found, “Preliminary COVID slide estimates suggest students will return in fall 2020 with roughly 70 percent of the learning gains in reading relative to a typical school year.”
The same study concluded that students are likely to return with less than 50 percent of those typical learning gains.
“We must implement timely, targeted and systematic instruction to realize [Lee County schools’] shared vision and prevent irrevocably adverse effects- and measure their effectiveness then quickly adjust accordingly,” Hunter’s PowerPoint stated.
Students who do schoolwork virtually will use Google Classroom to access instructional materials from teachers. They will also receive video instruction that is live, recorded or both, and their families will get support from teachers who are proficient in the Google Classroom system.
To gauge students’ progress and needs in math and reading, there will be district-wide screeners for those subjects. The screeners will be consistent across all schools, and they will be the basis on which schools and the school board effect measures to bring students up to where they would be if not for COVID-19.
In other business, the board:
• Approved AASB 2020-21 Annual School Board Membership dues in the amount of $15,000
• Approved the monthly financial report and cash reconciliation for the month of May from Ken Roberts
• Approved the Tentative Path to Reopening Schools (for more information about that plan, turn to page B1)
The Lee County School Board meets on the second Tuesday of every month, and its next meeting is scheduled for Aug. 11.