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District continues toward academic recovery post-pandemic

From staff reports

The South Carolina Department of Education released statewide public school results for the End-of-Course Examination Program (EOCEP) and Career Readiness assessments taken for high school courses in school year 2021-22. Although there is still work to be done, Beaufort County School District (BCSD) continues on trajectory toward academic recovery.

The End-of-Course Examination Program (EOCEP)

EOCEP provides tests in high school core courses and for courses taken in middle school for high school credit. The EOCEP tests the following subject areas: Algebra 1; English 2; U.S. History and the Constitution; and Biology 1.

The EOCEP encourages instruction in the specific academic standards for the courses, encourages student achievement, and documents the level of students’ mastery of the academic standards. Additionally, EOCEP examination scores count 20% in the calculation of the student’s final grade in gateway courses.

BCSD scores in two of three subject areas improved over 2021 (Algebra 1 and English 2), both of which were above the state passing percentage. Biology remained the same as 2021 and United States History was rescaled in 2022 due to adoption of new standards.

The impact of the pandemic interruption in this most recent data mirrors BCSD’s results on SC READY and SCPASS in Math and Science that have not yet reached the pre-pandemic levels of proficiency of 2019, but have increased per each grade level over 2021.

“The foundation of math has been greatly impacted by the pandemic,” Superintendent Frank Rodriguez said in a news release. “Even as we work to accelerate the ‘catch-up’ process, this ramification will likely be felt for several years.”

Career Readiness Assessments

Ready to Work (R2W), which is administered through WIN learning, is a career-readiness assessment that was administered to all 11th-grade students for the first time in the spring of 2018 to determine student achievement in three key subjects: Applied Mathematics, Reading for Information, and Locating Information. R2W provides a customized credential that shows a student’s ability to perform complex tasks and their qualifications for a broad range of jobs. There are four certificate levels: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum.

ACT WorkKeys is an assessment that tests students’ job skills in applied reading, writing, mathematics, and essential skills. Scores are based on job profiles that help employers select, hire, train, develop and retain a high-performance workforce.

The BCSD percentage of students earning Silver, Gold, and Platinum R2W certificates and the ACT WorkKeys percentage of students earning certificates both the exceeded state percentages.

“We will build on the progress and look forward to exploring and pursuing meaningful actions that will make an impact on student achievement,” State Superintendent Molly Spearman said.

One such solution at BCSD is that of targeted tutoring.

“As we embark on the upcoming instructional quarter, our secondary schools are establishing refined tutoring models to build on students’ specific academic needs,” BCSD Chief Instructional Services Officer Dr. Mary Stratos said.

“We have always said that academic recovery from the pandemic will be a multi-year process,” said Rodriguez. “Although we still have progress to be made, our students are headed on the right trajectory many thanks to the dedication of our staff, community partners, and parents.”

School District, and School Level Data for End of Course and Career Readiness assessments can be accessed by visiting WorkKeys assessment data, End-of-Course assessment data, and Ready to Work assessment data.

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