At a Sept 8. school board meeting, Patrick County Public Schools superintendent Jason Wood delivered his monthly report, which showed improving SOL scores and low COVID-19 quarantine numbers.
As previously reported, Patrick County ranked 7th in the commonwealth for SOL scores, the highest ranking attained by the district since 2010. The district also scored at least 7 points above the state average in all subjects.
“The state superintendent released a memo and it kind of painted a negative picture of SOL performance, but in all of that there were several school divisions that, through a pandemic, have excelled and we are one of them,” Wood said.
In addition, Patrick County outperforms much of the state in the Economically Disadvantaged, Students with Disabilities, and Black subgroups.
For the Economically Disadvantaged subgroup, the county placed 2nd in English, 5th in math and history, and 6th in science. In the Students with Disabilities subgroup, the county placed 5th in English and math, 12th in history, and 4th in science. In the Black subgroup, the county placed 14th in English, 6th in math and history, and 3rd in science.
Wood also noted that Patrick students typically perform well regardless of poverty level.
“We are the second highest performing school division in the state with an over 60% poverty rate, and that’s just phenomenal. The caliber of students we have, the work of our teaching and instructional staff, and the support that all of our support staff give our students is truly a family atmosphere in our school division. We take care of the whole child,” Wood said.
According to a graph Wood showed during his report, SOL performance usually decreases as the poverty level increases. However, Patrick County does not follow this trend. Wood said, “That’s just a true testament to the hard work and great school division we have.”
Additionally, Wood said the numbers of COVID-19 infections are low.
According to the current guidelines, students who have been exposed to someone positive for COVID-19 are not required to quarantine.
“You need to monitor symptoms and you should come back to school, because we know face to face in person learning is best for our students,” Wood said.
When the report was assembled, the county had two students who were not eligible to return to school due to COVID-19.
“Our numbers of Covid cases are really low this week, so we’re very proud of that and thanks to our staff for keeping our schools safe and clean,” Wood said.
In other matters, the board:
*Heard an update on the 2022-2023 budget. The board approved a carryover fund from an IDEA special education grant, increasing the year’s school budget to $40,259,921.64.
*Approved the consent agenda.
*Approved an annual interim review of the Gifted Program. The program will be under official review in 2024.
*Approved the Comprehensive Plan, demonstrating academic goals and progress. This plan is in place until 2027.
*Approved the continuation of the COVID Shared Leave.
*Approved the monthly financial report.
*Approved the personnel report as amended.
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