Schools confront ‘off the rails’ numbers of failing grades as pandemic continues

Reopening Schools
Virus Outbreak

Wearing masks to prevent the spread of COVID19, elementary school students use hand sanitizer before entering school for classes in Godley, Texas on Aug. 5, 2020.

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The first report cards of the new school year are arriving with a lot more Fs than usual, and it’s not just parents who are getting distressed.

School districts from coast to coast have reported the number of students failing classes has risen by as many as two or three times — a sign of the struggles many students are having with distance learning, particularly English language learners, those with disabilities and other disadvantaged students.

Educators see a number of factors at play: Students learning from home skip assignments — or school altogether.

Internet access is limited or inconsistent, making it difficult to complete and upload assignments.

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