Lowcountry school districts finding ways to make sure students stay on top of their curriculum

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MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD) – School districts in the Lowcountry are putting more curriculum in place to help students, especially third graders who are about to take state testing.

Some local learning centers say more parents are reaching out for help for their kids.

“These kids cant transition quickly. Kids that have learning struggles and ADHD and behavioral issues they don’t learn quickly,” says Nicole Vacula, Center Director at The Brain Balance in Mt. Pleasant.

Some third grade teachers question whether students can transition to a normal school year after the pandemic.

“As our kids move through the rest of this year and next year, all teachers should be given the more options to be responsive to their individual kid and the individual classes needs and not be teaching by the book,” says Dr. Chris Hass, a 3rd grade teacher.

Studies show third grade students are falling behind across the country, but local school districts say they haven’t seen an uptick.

“We don’t anticipate a huge difference in our numbers in students being able to pass SC Ready at the end of the year, we have been working really hard are children are ready,” says Shelissa Bowman, Director of Elementary Curriculum and Instruction, Dorchester County District 4

The South Carolina Read to Succeed Act went into place in 2017, requiring all third grade students pass state tests in order to move to fourth grade. With the pandemic taking students out of the classroom, Lowcountry school districts are figuring out new ways to keep students on track.

“We are going to make sure we do preassessing to see what the gaps are in there learning and making sure we are providing tutoring or some type of intervention to help close those achievement gaps,” Bowman says.

Tutoring centers say they believe there is still work that needs to be done.

“I really think within the next year we are going to continue to see more and more influx of kids who they’re not getting enough through the school. They need one on one work to get back to an acceptable education level,” says Vacula.

Charleston County School District says they do not see an increase of numbers, but plan on utilizing their school summer camp to help those students who fell behind.

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