NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — New Haven had the highest learning loss in math among all Connecticut school districts, and the second-highest in reading, since the onset of the pandemic, according to a detailed map released Friday from Harvard and Stanford universities.
The Education Recovery Scorecard, built by Harvard University’s Center for Education Policy Research and Stanford University’s Educational Opportunity Project, is the first time data has been available at such a close level. The map uses data from the National Assessment of Educational Progress, which is often referred to as the nation’s educational report card, to show the difference between Connecticut’s school districts.
During the pandemic, the average U.S. public school student in the third through eighth grades lost half a year of learning in math, and a quarter-year in reading. While 6% of students nationally were enrolled in districts that lost more than a year of learning in math, 3% were in districts where math scores went up.
The map also shows that districts with a higher rate of students on free or reduced school lunch missed even more than more well-off districts.
Statewide data for Connecticut shows that students lost the equivalent of seven months in math from 2019 to 2022, and more than four months of reading during the same time.
When it comes to districts that reported data, New Haven Public Schools students lost the most time in math out of all the districts in the state, at a year and three months. Waterbury Public Schools and Hartford Public Schools students each lost about a year.
The districts with the lowest amount of children in poverty tended to have small losses. In New Haven, 72.9% of students are on free or reduced-price lunch. Weston Public Schools students, meanwhile, lost .03 grade levels in math, with 1.8% students receiving federal lunch aid.
To combat the loss, the Edunomics Lab estimates that New Haven Public School would have to pay more than $28.28 million on math tutoring and more than $15.16 million of tutoring in reading. In Hartford, that would be $20.7 million in math tutoring and $13.52 million for reading.
Weston Public Schools, in comparison, would have to pay $1.28 million for math tutoring, and $229,036 for reading.