NHA Students Avoid Academic Regression
NHA’s students’ progress is rosier than most of the country’s with our students avoiding academic regression!
Unlike most public school students from across the United States, New Horizons Academy’s students overall avoided academic regression. Most NHA students either held their own or made slight academic progress throughout last year’s COVID school closure and through this school year’s unpredictability.
According to a recent study by McKinsey & Company, nationally, students started this school year three months behind in math and one and half months behind in reading. With continued uncertainty, online instruction, and quarantine issues, nationally, this regression continued with most students, at best, ending this school year a half a grade behind. By June 2021, McKinsey & Company predict that many students will be over five to nine months behind. They found that “some students didn’t learn any new materials once the pandemic hit and may have even slipped backwards.” Thankfully, that was NOT the case for most NHA students!
Even though many NHA students are academically behind their typical peers because of their disabilities, NHA students did not experience further academic regression this school year. According to the DIBELS Reading Assessment by the Center on Teaching & Learning, all of our first graders saw an increase in letter naming fluency this school year while all first through third grade students either stayed at the same level or saw an increase in their word reading fluency, in connecting letter sounds, and in oral fluency reading with two students learning 55 more new words in just four months. For our fourth through sixth graders, they all either stayed at the same level or saw an increase in their oral fluency reading with an average of 18 more new words in four months.
Nationally for kindergarteners, the pandemic was even harder! Nationally, kindergarten enrollment dropped by 16% with many parents electing to keep their children at home rather than face online instructional learning with preliterate preschoolers. The Ohio Department of Education found this same trend with an 8% drop in kindergarten enrollment this year.
That may have been the state and national trend, but NHA saw a 23% increase in preschool and kindergarten enrollment at its Wauseon Campus from the 2019-2020 school year to the 2020-2021 school year. NHA kindergarteners saw a 12% improvement in letter naming fluency from the beginning of the school year through mid-year. We hope to see this trend continue through May.
Early intervention is the key to special education services, and NHA is proud to say that early intervention works!