The 2019-2020 school year was unlike any other that our state and nation has faced. The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) forced South Carolina school facilities to close for in-person learning from March 16, 2020 until the end of the school year. Fortunately, teachers and school and district leaders were able to deploy emergency remote learning overnight that allowed instruction to continue in a new virtual environment.
The South Carolina Department of Education and State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman sought to support students, parents, and educators with maximum flexibility to meet the needs of their local communities during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. This included seeking relief from a variety of state and federal requirements that placed undue burdens on school populations.
On March 27, 2020, the United States Department of Education approved South Carolina's request to waive spring statewide assessments, accountability ratings, and certain reporting requirements in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) for the 2019-2020 school year. For this reason, you will not see the typical state assessments results reflected on the 2020 iteration of the report cards. You will however find important information about safety, finance, and the classroom environment that play equally important parts in ensuring that a school is a safe environment that fosters learning for all students.
The South Carolina Department of Education hopes that parents and communities will use report cards as a tool to engage in important conversations about the previous year's successes and challenges that schools across our state face every day. We are continually working to ensure that our accountability system accurately reflects the hard work being done by educators to meet the needs of all students.