VDOE releases results of SOL tests

Published 9:31 am Saturday, August 25, 2018


The Virginia Department of Education on Wednesday released results of Standards of Learning assessments taken by students during the 2017-2018 school year.

According to the information provided by the VDOE, pass rates on the 2017-2018 SOLs were little changed from the previous year, with students performing as follows:

  • 79 percent of the students who took reading tests passed, compared with 80 percent during 2016-2017;
  • 78 percent passed in writing, compared with 79 percent previously;
  • 77 percent passed in mathematics, compared with 79 percent in 2016-2017;
  • 81 percent passed SOL tests in science, compared with 82 percent previously; and
  • 84 percent of students tested in history and social studies passed, compared with 86 percent in 2016-2017.

Further, under the revised Standards of Accreditation approved by the Board of Education in November 2017, school quality indicators for English and mathematics will include the academic growth of students making significant progress toward meeting state benchmarks. Schools will also be evaluated on progress in closing achievement gaps in English and mathematics, raising overall achievement in science and reducing chronic absenteeism. High schools will also be evaluated on their success in raising graduation rates and reducing dropout rates.


  • The spreadsheet for Franklin City Public Schools shows that for all students there was a 68 percent pass rate in reading; 63 percent pass rate in writing; 83 percent pass rate in history and social sciences; 70 percent pass rate in mathematics; and a 73 percent pass rate in science. For 2016-2017, the pass rate figures were respectively: 70; 70; 86; 70; and 79. For 2015-2016, the pass rate figures were respectively: 68; 73; 86; 71; and 82.
  • The spreadsheet for Southampton County Public Schools shows that for all students there was an 80 percent pass rate in reading; 81 percent pass rate in writing; 89 percent pass rate in history and social sciences; 80 percent pass rate in mathematics; and 86 percent pass rate in science. For 2016-2017, the pass rate figures were respectively: 80; 86; 92; 85; and 87. For 2015-2016, the pass rate figures were respectively: 79; 86; 90; 86; and 88.
  • The spreadsheet for Isle of Wight County Public Schools shows that for all student there was an 81 percent pass rate in reading; 78 percent pass rate in writing; 84 percent pass rate in history and social sciences; 78 percent pass rate in mathematics; and 85 percent pass rate in science.

Representatives of each school division, when asked for comment on the scores, focused their remarks on accreditation.

  • Tamara Sterling, superintendent of Franklin City Public Schools, texted: “The Franklin City Public Schools community deserves to have schools that exemplify excellence! We are fully accredited division and we all are excited to continue this journey together. I want to thank the school board, teachers, administrators, and parents for their hard work and dedication to the students of FCPS.”

Bob Holt, chairman of the Franklin City Public School Board, emailed remarks ahead on Tuesday afternoon: “We are delighted to receive the official notification that all three Franklin schools are now fully accredited. Our internal assessments told us we would be fully accredited, but we needed to wait for official confirmation by the Virginia Department of Education before commenting.

“This accreditation is the result of a team approach with numerous factions all moving in a concerted direction for student achievement. Our classroom teachers have always worked very hard, and they deserve much of the credit for this accomplishment. Increased parental education and involvement were also huge factors. Superintendent [Tamara] Sterling, in just her first year in Franklin, brought a new level of continuous data analysis and financial scrutiny to our division. We have always had a dedicated staff of school and central office leaders, but some adjustments were made where necessary to improve student successes. Funding from city, state and federal sources were dedicated to a laser focus on key student academic gains. Finally, the school board focused on taking politics out of decision-making; it is always about the best courses of action for the students. Conversations with our students will quickly reveal an excitement about their opportunities in the future.

“Please remember that full accreditation is just the first step in Franklin’s long-term plan. We already have middle school students taking high school courses. High school students are taking college courses and serving internships in a variety of areas. A community service activity is now an additional requirement for graduation. Our career technology offerings and JROTC continue to expand. This is only the beginning!”

  • Dr. Gwendolyn P. Shannon, division superintendent for Southampton County Public Schools, emailed:

“Southampton County Public Schools has a longstanding tradition of excellence. Faculty and staff go the extra mile to ensure that we continually move forward, meeting the needs of all students. As division superintendent, I am proud that ALL Southampton County Public Schools are fully accredited!

“I give all the credit to our hard-working and dedicated administrators, teachers, staff, students, parents, school board and community who have created an environment that encourages our students to thrive and excel academically, artistically, socially and athletically.

“As the standards have become more rigorous, we continue to expand excellence and make school more amazing for our students and staff. Our continued Fully Accredited status is a direct result of this dedication to excellence.

“As official data is released, we are disaggregating information to gauge our progress, highlighting our strengths and targeting areas of opportunity for growth. The many gifts and talents of our staff members, as well as the academic excellence of our students, help us to continue our longstanding tradition of excellence — regardless.”

  • Lynn Briggs, director of community and media relations for Isle of Wight County Public Schools, emailed: “We are pleased that all of our schools are fully accredited as expected. In Isle of Wight County Schools, we are working to ensure all students are college, career and life ready, and the SOL tests are one measure to show we are achieving that goal.”

Asked about this accreditation, Charles Pyle, director of communications for VDOE, told The Tidewater News that “School divisions are familiar with their data. Looking at the preliminary information that VDOE provides, they can make predictions and some school divisions do so.”

The official results will not be released until next month because, he said, “We don’t have a complete picture until mid-September. There’s still a crucial piece for high schools and that’s summer graduates. That information won’t be collected until the first part of September. School divisions know their own data.”

Pyle added that official accreditation report is tentatively expected to be released on Thursday, Sept. 27.

For more details on how each school division performed in other subgroups, visit www.doe.virginia.gov.