Richmond Public Schools addresses lagging SOL scores

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Richmond schools are responding after students SOL scores dipped an average of 2.6 percent across the five subjects this past school year.

“We have to have a commitment to continuous improvement. Look at accountability rating as a benchmark, but the goal has to be that all schools are working to get 100 percent of their kids prepared each year,” Superintendant Bedeen said.

8News reporter Matthew McClellan just sat in on a round-table discussion with the district’s superintendent.

Dana Bedden outlined a comprehensive plan for pinpointing the problems causing those sagging test scores at Richmond’s public schools and how to correct them.

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Starting this fall, each school will have to set up a progress plan, then go through a root cause analysis process to identify problems, correct it and identify it.

The schools will then turn that into the state.

At the meeting, the superintendent pointed to issues like chronic absenteeism, overcrowding, flat-funded schools and failing facilities. Bedeen said that all of these factors have led to the SOL scores, but also reminded people that accreditation and testing are not the ultimate measure of achievement and progress.

“We have to have a commitment to continuous improvement. Look at accountability rating as a benchmark, but the goal has to be that all schools are working to get 100 percent of their kids prepared each year,” Bedeen said.

Each school will have to turn in their root cause analysis in October. From there, administrators will monitor each school’s progress throughout the year.

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