DPI Releases COVID Learning Impact Study

By March 3, 2022 News

This week, the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) released a long-awaited study evaluating pandemic impacts on learning. DPI partnered with SAS to conduct the study, required by statute.

In order to estimate impact, researchers projected how they expected students to perform and compared that to how students actually performed in 2020-21. Data confirm negative impacts in every subject, at every grade level.

The Office of Learning Recovery shared the findings at the State Board of Education’s March meeting. Click on the screenshot below to access the presentation.

Presentation from DPI’s Office of Learning Recovery to the State Board of Education

A breakdown of key findings

  • During the pandemic, students made less progress at all grade levels and in all subject areas, with the exception of English II.
  • Moreover, middle grades science and math sustained the greatest negative impacts (5th-9th grade math and 8th grade science).
  • Students learned better when they were on site. For instance, those students who returned for face-to-face instruction, and with supports, did better than students who only learned virtually.
  • Student impacts spanned racial and ethnic groups. Gaps grew based on income and race.
  • Learning progress among students with disabilities and English learners tracked more closely to projections than it did for the general student population.

What about charter schools?

Data show some slight differences between charter schools and district schools. Here’s the screenshot from the report table comparing effect sizes.

DPI will release a final report in December.

Find DPI’s press release here. Read more from EdNC here.

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