New Research Reveals Pandemic's Lasting Impact on Our Nation's Youngest Learners


Student Growth in the Post-COVID Era offers a groundbreaking assessment of student performance, tracking growth year over year and comparing it to historical trends. The report—leveraging three years of longitudinal data—is the first of its kind to look at impacts on younger learners who were not yet in formal schooling at the start of the pandemic. This research is not an evaluation of specific instructional programs or interventions, but rather it provides a temperature check on students' academic growth, parsing aggregate data to determine where—and for whom—recovery may be occurring. 

Key findings:

  • Young students require more support to keep pace with historical growth trends.

  • Older students (i.e., those in Grade 4 in 2021) demonstrate signs of recovery in both reading and mathematics that in some cases align with their pre-pandemic growth trajectories.

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