Collier County students have performed well under pandemic circumstances

Reporter: Taylor Smith Writer: Jack Lowenstein
Published: Updated:
Credit: WINK News.

The 2020-21 school year was unlike any other thanks to the coronavirus. Some students learned from home, and others were learning in person.

During the pandemic, there has been a slight drop in scores in certain areas of the state assessment exams, and there is a plan to help fix the learning loss in that area.

MORE: Florida Department of Education – Florida Standards Assessments

Collier County Public Schools looked at struggling schools and picked 16 of them to add an extra 30 minutes of learning every day.

For high schools, CCPS is adding credit recovery classes to the school day as well. The school district said, while there were some learning losses, it’s proud of its students.

“Learning to use a computer and having access to a different classroom experience was a lot more difficult for many students,” Cherree Diver said.

CCPS pushed through.

“Never in our history have we actually outperformed the state in all 21 states tested areas,” Collier County Superintendent Kamela Patton said.

Compared to 2019, Collier County saw growth in the grade five science assessment in 2021, but saw a slight dip in scores in math and language arts.

The School District of Lee County saw a 10% dip in passing scores in math and slight dips in language arts and science, but says its third and fourth grade math students exceeded statewide performance.

Lee County school district says third and fourth grade math students exceeded statewide performance. The school district is also preparing to get students back up to speed, adding literacy coaches in kindergarten through second grade to help set the students up for success.

In Collier County, Patton says this year’s assessment was low overall throughout the state, but Collier County test scores were still some of the highest among the 67 counties.

“To do that during pandemic times, it’s even more exciting,” Patton said.

CCPS thinks having a high percent of in-person learning helped them score well, and parents we spoke to agree.

“I think it’s awesome,” Ed Velykeo said. “I know my daughter couldn’t wait to get back to school last year. We were happy because she struggled the year before with trying to learn from home.”

“I think that says a lot for our school system in Collier County coming together to provide our students with what they needed during this transition time,” Diver said.

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