Gov. Youngkin’s announces millions to combat learning loss in Virginia

Oct 5, 2023 | News

Original source: WSLS News 10, Roanoke VA

ROANOKE, Va. – Governor Glenn Youngkin wants to make sure students in Virginia succeed in the classroom.

Disappointed by the results of recent SOL test scores, his administration is investing millions to make sure children get the extra help they need.

“$418 million to combat learning loss, ” Governor Youngkin said at a press conference in early September.

Governor Glenn Youngkin announces money to help students achieve in the classroom after not doing well because of COVID-19 as part of his “All In Virginia.” The plan targets three areas which include addressing a statewide tutoring initiative.

“When I say intensive, I mean intensive focused on math and reading dealing with the foundational years from 3rd to 8th grade,” Youngkin said.

“I believe half the numbers of third through 8th graders are falling behind in reading,” CEO of Pearl John Failla said.

Failla and his team are working and state education leaders to develop a tutoring program to help those with learning loss.

PEARL works with universities like Johns Hopkins.

This is the first year that PEARL Leaders are working with school divisions across the Commonwealth to make their tutoring programs stronger to help those students who are behind.

“At the end of the day, there’s no time to waste here, if there’s a student that needs help today, and there’s no tutor in that community, I believe it’s imperative to get that student paired up with a virtual tutor,” Failla said.

10 News reached out to school divisions across the state and Lynchburg and Henry County Schools are planning to meet in a conference next week to review tutoring options.

Roanoke County Schools have a free online tutoring program called “Just in Time.” It provides students in grades 6-12 with an immediate online live tutor 24 hours per day/7 days a week.

If a student is struggling with independent work, they can get immediate help to get them unstuck, even if they are at home late at night.

“Making sure we target those students, we know who those students are specifically,” Dr. Ken Nicely said.