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Summer enrollment more than doubles from 2019

Southampton County Public Schools are seeing significantly increased participation in summer school this year compared to 2019 after the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic led to learning loss for many students in 2020 and 2021.

Kelli Gillette

In her presentation to Southampton County School Board members July 12, SCPS Director of Curriculum and Instruction Kelli Gillette noted that during the June school board meeting, someone had asked about how many students had participated in summer school in the past.

“Last year didn’t really count because we were virtual and we had less students, so I went back and I looked at 2019 as compared to this year, and as you can see, we had in 2019, for elementary, 72,” she said, referring to a slide in her presentation. “This year, it’s 146.”

Southampton Middle School had 70 summer school participants in 2019, and it has 205 this year. Southampton High School had 52 in 2019 and has 80 this year.

The only category that went against this trend was the Tidewater Regional Governor’s School, which went from 11 in 2019 to 10 this year.

“We had one student (that) had to back out at the last minute,” Gillette said. “That will begin next Monday for two weeks, Monday through Thursday.”

But addressing the total number of summer school participants, she said, “You can see in 2019, 205 was our total, which is what the middle school is now, so we doubled to 441 this year.”

Then she provided a brief summary of how summer school is going thus far in 2021.

“It’s going well,” she said. “The students have had the diagnostic test at the middle school. The elementary (students) used their diagnostic test that they took at the end of the year so they wouldn’t have to take the time to retake that test. 

“And teachers are going strong every day with students in small groups, and the principals are doing a great job,” she added, noting the school division is very proud of the process that is unfolding.