“COVID Slide” Impacting Schools 

The “COIVD Slide” was discussed last night during the February meeting of the Laurens County District 56 School Board. During the meeting in the Clinton High School auditorium, Superintendent Dr. David O’Shields briefed trustees on the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment.  That assessment gauges a student’s readiness to begin 5K kindergarten.

Dr. O’Shields said that Looking at the assessments for the past several years, it is apparent that what has come to be known as the “COVID Slide” is real. He said the readiness of students beginning 5k Kindergarten for the 2021/2022 school year was not equal to the last academic year. O’Shields went on to point out that children who attended the M.S. Bailey Child Development Center’s 4K program were more prepared for 5K than children who attended other 4K programs or no 4K at all. 4K Kindergarten is not mandatory in South Carolina.

“Losing half of March and all of April and May hurt us.  There’s no way around it….it just did” said Dr. O’Shields.  “We have our work cut out for us.”

Dr. O’Shields commended the district’s teachers and staff.  He said the dedication of district employees prevented the “COVID Slide” from being worse.  He also said that he believes that District 56 will be able to recover the academic ground that has been lost to the pandemic.