ISBE 2022 status bulletin highlights recovery from pandemic learning loss

PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) has released its annual newsletterhighlighting recovery from pandemic learning loss.

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Gov. JB Pritzker said there is no shortage of challenges facing teachers and students across the state.

“Some students were falling behind in their learning goals, some students had suffered insurmountable grief and trauma,” Pritzker said.

Despite the interruptions, education officials said Illinois students were exceeding expectations.

“One year into our recovery efforts, we are definitely on the right track,” said Carmen Ayala, superintendent of the Illinois State Board of Education.

On Thursday, the Illinois State Board of Education released its annual overview of public school performance.

Highlights from the 2022 state report card include increased student growth in English language arts and math across all demographic groups, surpassing pre-pandemic levels.

Illinois students also recorded a graduation rate of 87.3, the highest in 12 years. “Largely driven by black and Hispanic students,” Pritzker said.

In the new report card, 56% of public schools in Peoria are designated commendable or superior, up from 39% before the pandemic.

“I am very proud of the work of my staff, my parents and the community. We bring our students closer to their full potential by reimagining literacy, math, ASE, high school graduation, attendance, freshmen on track, career paths, learning advanced learning and much more. We’ve come a long way,” said Sharon Desmoulin-Kherat, superintendent of Peoria Public Schools.

While Illinois still faces challenges, Pritzker said the state is heading in the right direction.

“No one is suggesting that the report card is perfect, it’s not. But it’s a direction indicator, things are improving and accelerating in a way that I think is unexpected compared to many other states,” Pritzker said.

The report card also revealed that 30% of students missed 17 or more days of school due to excused or unexcused absences. The ISBE has committed $12 million through a new state-funded grant to address chronic absenteeism.

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