Test scores reveal deep impact of COVID disruption on Kentucky school children

Published 12:17 pm Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Statewide test results from last spring showed that less than half of the students scored at the proficient or distinguished levels in many Kentucky schools.

The tests scores were aimed at better understanding how students performed academically amid learning disruptions caused by COVID-19. State education officials cautioned the latest test scores can’t be compared with pre-pandemic scores.

Students faced challenges as schools switched to remote learning for months due to the pandemic.

“We knew these results would not be what we wanted to see, but the previous two school years saw extreme challenges,” state Education Commissioner Jason Glass said in a news release Wednesday. “We can use this information to address the gaps caused by COVID-19 disruptions and provide our students with the supports they need to be successful.”

Since the pandemic affected many aspects of education in the past school year, the state Education Department received a waiver from federal accountability. As a result, school accountability indicators and ratings weren’t part of the 2020-2021 reporting.

One comparable piece of data: All Kentucky public school juniors participate in the ACT, which tests students in English, mathematics, reading and science. Scored on a scale of 1 to 36, the overall composite score was 18.0, down from 19.0 in the last year tested, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported.