Assessments show LPS teachers helped lessen negative impact of pandemic

While schools across the nation continue to learn how much the COVID-19 pandemic impacted students, Lincoln Public Schools says fall assessments show that students in Lincoln continued to progress at a better pace than their peers.

“The global pandemic interrupted classroom instruction and forced educators to adapt their lessons to virtual and hybrid environments in ever-changing conditions,” said LPS Associate Superintendent for Instruction Matt Larson. “We knew there was going to be learning loss, however, our educators worked tirelessly to make sure that our students continued to learn and grow, lessening the negative impacts of disrupted learning.”

LPS officials released their Fall 2022 Measure of Academic Progress (MAP) data, along with information from previous years prior to and during the pandemic. The MAP growth assessment is one of the nation’s most widely used and trusted assessments to measure academic achievement and growth in K-12 education. It is an adaptive test that allows educators to make real-time assessments of student learning and timely adjustments to provide learning interventions and extra supports for students. It can also be  compared nationally with over 6 million students in grades 3-8 who also took MAP growth assessments in reading and mathematics.

“There is no way to know what student learning should look like during a pandemic,” said LPS Director of Continuous Improvement and Professional Learning Sarah Salem. “The best way we can gauge student learning is to look at a reliable and consistent assessment like MAP that allows us to compare LPS student learning to the rest of the country.”

LPS Median Reading Percentile Rank for all students

  Fall 2019 Fall 2022 Fall 2021 Fall 2022
  (pre-pandemic) (following Spring 2020 fourth quarter asynchronous remote instruction) (following 2020-2021 school year including hybrid instruction and remote learning) (following 2021-2022 school year: 3/4 masked, continued teacher/student pandemic related absenteeism )
Grade 3 66 68 68 63
Grade 4 67 70 68 65
Grade 5 64 68 64 61
Grade 6 63 64 64 62
Grade 7 67 64 62 61
Grade 8 64 64 60 57

LPS Median Mathematics Percentile Rank for all students

  Fall 2019 Fall 2022 Fall 2021 Fall 2022
  (pre-pandemic) (following Spring 2020 fourth quarter asynchronous remote instruction) (following 2020-2021 school year including hybrid instruction and remote learning) (following 2021-2022 school year: 3/4 masked, continued teacher/student pandemic related absenteeism )
Grade 3 61   62 57
Grade 4 64   63 62
Grade 5 60 58 58 57
Grade 6 56 59 56 58
Grade 7 63 61 55 54
Grade 8 65 65 59 57

 

Key takeaways LPS gained from the reading and math assessments include:

  • In both reading and math from Fall 2019 to Fall 2022, LPS student achievement in grades 3-8 as measured by MAP exceeded the national average*. In some grade levels LPS exceeds the national mean for the norm group by a significant difference.
  • In LPS between 2019 and 2021, in reading there were declines at only two grade levels, with the largest decline in seventh grade of five percentile points.
  • Nationally*, the mean decline across grades 3-8 in reading between 2019 and 2021 was 5.2 percentile points. The mean decline in LPS reading across grades 3-8 over the same period was 0.8 percentile points.
  • Between 2019 and 2021, in LPS mathematics there were declines at four grade levels, with the largest decline in seventh grade of eight percentile points – less than the range of declines nationally*.
  • Nationally*, the mean decline across grades 3-8 in mathematics between 2019 and 2021 was 10.0 percentile points. The mean decline in LPS mathematics across grades 3-8 over the same period was 2.7 percentile points.
  • LPS achievement as measured by MAP growth, in both reading and mathematics between 2019 and 2021, did not decline as much as achievement did nationally*. In some grade levels LPS improved in both reading and mathematics, reflecting the effort of teachers and leaders to ensure continuity of learning through the pandemic.
  • Although smaller in magnitude than national declines, LPS declines mirrored the nation* in that declines were greater in mathematics than reading. 
  • In LPS, in both reading and mathematics, there were slight declines in median percentile ranks between 2021 and 2022. Analysis of these scores continues, but may be related to ongoing teacher and student fatigue related to COVID-19 protocols and challenges associated with students returning to in-person learning.

“What this national data tells us is that LPS students over the pandemic did not have the learning loss that other students across the country had. We credit that to the hard work of our classroom teachers under challenging circumstances. This is also because of the support from our interventionists, curriculum department, administrators, families and community in coming together to support our children,” added Larson.

*Source: Learning during COVID-19: An update on student achievement and growth at the start of the 2021-22 school year


Published: November 1, 2022, Updated: November 1, 2022