Students get failing grades in math and science thanks to COVID

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Students get failing grades in math and science thanks to COVID

Olivia Sanchez

The Hechinger Report

  • Many students whose final years of high school have been disrupted by the pandemic are struggling in crucial college courses.
  • A math student says she found out her grandfather had died of COVID while she was taking her 12th grade math class on Zoom.
  • Pandemic rules that allowed students to pass or fail classes meant that many students “passed” without knowing the material.
  • A prominent math teacher says he doesn’t remind students they failed. He tells them that they will understand this and that they will be leaders.

Andrea Hernandez studied the multiplication table almost every day during the summer between her third and fourth years. Sitting at her family’s kitchen table in Dallas, she printed the arithmetic over and over again in a yellow, spiral-bound notebook.

When she started at a new school this fall, she passed the timed math tests. From then until the coronavirus hit, when she was a 16-year-old precalculus student, Hernandez shone in the classroom.

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