Examining COVID-19's impact on student learning over the last two years

Posted at 5:47 PM, Apr 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-14 20:39:55-04

(WXYZ) — In tonight's 7 UpFront report we're taking a deeper dive into a Michigan State University study on the impact the COVID-19 pandemic had on student learning.

We're being joined by Michigan State University Director of EPIC (Education Policy Innovation Collaborative), and the Clifford Erickson Distinguished Professor of Education Policy at MSU's College of Education Katharine Strunk to talk about it.

You can see the full interview in the video player above.

"We're looking at the benchmark assessments, these are kind of the formative assessments that districts are required to give to students in the fall and in the spring last year and this year and then again next year and was intended by the legislature to track student achievement during the pandemic," Strunk says. "This report we're looking at the Fall 2020 to Fall 21 growth in student achievement on these benchmark assessments and what we find is, pretty much what we see across that country, that students are making much slower than typical growth in the 2021 school year, into Fall 2021. In fact, about a quarter of students made zero or less than zero growth on their achievement test between fall and fall. We also show that achievement gaps remain pretty large throughout the state, so low-income students are scoring much lower than higher-income students, special needs students are scoring lower than their non-special ed peers, and students of color tend to be scoring lower than white students. So this is a troubling report. We also do show that students who are learning remotely throughout the year in 2021 were further behind than students who were in person."