High school students

August 22, 2022

The students of Martinsville City Public Schools are recovering rapidly from learning loss related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL) testing data for the 2021-2022 academic year, released by the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) last Thursday shows that MCPS students are making significant jumps in SOL pass rates since the historic lows of the 2020-2021 school year, the first year the tests were taken since the onset of the pandemic.

For the first time since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, nearly every MCPS student (99 percent) participated in SOL testing during the 20-22 school year, exceeding the state’s 95 percent participation target. Division-wide, students across all subgroups made substantial gains in each of the core areas of science, math, and reading.

In math, MCPS students achieved a 59 percent pass rate, an impressive 29 percent increase from the 30 percent pass rate in the 20-21 school year. In the area of science, the division’s 46 percent pass rate equates to an 18-point gain over the previous year’s 28 percent. Students also improved in reading, going from a 53 percent pass rate in 20-21 to 61 percent in the 21-22 school year.

“Our students, staff, and families worked together to make these gains despite the challenges faced from the pandemic,” said Assistant Superintendent of Instruction Dr. Angilee Downing. “We will continue to focus on the individual needs of our students and providing the supports necessary to accelerate learning and close any gaps that may remain.”  

Though students have not yet attained the high pass rates they achieved prior to the pandemic (80 percent in math, 68 percent in science, and 67 percent in reading for the 2018-2019 school year, the last year the tests were taken before the onset of COVID-19), these latest scores indicate that the division is on the right track in its efforts to make up for the learning loss that has occurred over the past several years.

"We are very proud of our students, families, teachers, support personnel, staff, and school board members,” said Schools Superintendent Dr. Zebedee Talley. “We have made significant gains in all areas and plan to accelerate our students to a place of academic excellence. In addition, we plan to focus on social emotional learning and relationship team building social skills. The journey of academic excellence continues for Martinsville City Public Schools!"