Gilbert on SOL Scores: Democrats Failed Our Students

gshipleyEducation, Uncategorized

Statement of House Republican Leader Todd Gilbert on the results of this year’s Standards of Learning tests:

“I read the results of the Standards of Learning released today by the Department of Education with disbelief. Barely half of our students tested proficient in math. Under 60 percent tested proficient in science. The results were even worse for subgroups of students who have faced educational challenges in the past, such as students from poor families, those with disabilities, Black and Hispanic children.

“This represents a catastrophic failure of one of the Commonwealth’s fundamental responsibilities — educating Virginia’s children. Teachers and students did their best to adapt to the challenges of the pandemic, but the game was rigged against them from the start. Without full-time, in-person learning, most of the students never had a chance.

“Worse, this didn’t have to happen. Republicans begged Democrats to open schools as soon as possible, but they voted against legislation that would have brought them back to school as soon as March. We tried over and over again to get parents the financial help they needed to pay for tutoring and other learning aids so kids wouldn’t fall behind. House Democrats blocked those efforts at every turn.

“I hope my Democratic colleagues recognize that the last thing we should be doing right now is pursuing the far-left’s agenda to further politicize our curriculum, lower achievement standards, and eliminate advanced diplomas.

“Our students already lost a year of learning and the damage could be irreparable. House Democrats must be held responsible. They failed our children.”