Excellence with Equity (Closing the Achievement Gap)
Mouse over picture and press play to see Harvard professor, Dr. Ronald Ferguson talk with Henrico County parents and community members about the challenges of education and how we can tackle the achievement gap.
Henrico County Public Schools has a gap in student academic achievement. White students and Asian students perform at higher levels on most academic measures than do African American students, Hispanic students, and students with disabilities. While there are individual differences between students, this gap is evident when comparing overall student groups.
This is not new information in Henrico and our schools are not alone in this situation. In fact, this achievement gap is clearly evident throughout the Commonwealth and across the nation. The Henrico County School Board has been examining student performance data by group and acknowledging the achievement gap since 2009. Approaches to closing the achievement gap in Henrico Schools has taken a broad perspective with implementation of instructional strategies that are based on research and best practice; however, we have not made the desired progress to ensure all students learn to their highest potential. This is not an acceptable outcome for the students of Henrico County. The school board, the school division leadership, and the faculty and staff of every school is committed to closing this gap.
To that end, the Henrico County community is invited to engage with the school division in this important work. This webpage will serve as a portal for information about efforts to close the gap. It will also be a place for the community to identify issues, share ideas, and celebrate successes.
To begin the process of closing the gap, two community meetings were held, where information and statistics were presented and attendees were invited to share their thoughts and ideas. These meetings were held on Tuesday, January 10, 2012 at the New Bridge Learning Center on Nine Mile Road and Wednesday, January 25, 2012 at the County Government Training Center on Parham Road. More than 400 community members joined in the conversation between these two meetings. The outcomes of these discussions were used to identify the themes that will structure the sharing of information. The themes on the side of this webpage represent broad categories of barriers to student success and potential solutions that were identified by the members of the community who attended the achievement gap meetings. Click the links to learn more about each specific issue and explore ideas for reaching our goals. As Henrico schools and the community continue with this important work, these themes will be a resource to share information, identify issues, and generate ideas.
Together the schools and community can make a difference in this achievement gap! Please explore this page and stay involved in the work.