Finding alternatives to failures


Makenzie Clarken, Senior Writer

The failure rate at Limestone has noticeably increased. Although Limestone is struggling with the failure rate many other schools in the area are as well. “I think nationwide the numbers reflect everyone is struggling” stated principal Jeri Look. 

The world has been faced with many challenges such as COVID, which some speculate could be the main source of this rise in failure rates. “We do have a lot of numbers that do suggest the pandemic has taken its toll” stated Look. During the fall of 2019, 80 students had one F, while fall of 2020 had 131 students who failed at least one class. Likewise, fall of 2019 had less students with four failing grades.  Fall 2020 found 42 students in that situation, whereas the previous year had 11.

 Not only are remote students struggling to keep up with grades, but also in-person learners as well. “I do think that online construction is a safe alternative, but from an educational standpoint I think kids need to be in the classroom with their teachers,” said Look. With some students being online and some being in-person it can be hard for students to get the help they need in a class. 

With the failure rates rising, Limestone brainstormed ways to try to improve these rates which included bringing some remote learners in to work one on one with a teacher after school, when less people are around, and less worry about the spread of the COVID virus. Out of the kids that were brought in to receive in-person assistance,  there were 21 F’s in the beginning and by the end of the semester, 17 grades had improved to passing.

Limestone has also kept open their math and English labs during RA to give extra help to students. 

Limestone has created a few options to help students recover from their failing grades. One way was creating repeat sections of required courses for students to earn credit this semester. The other option is APEX where a student works independently online to earn credit. With remote learners already working independently and it not being an ideal situation, being able to put the students in course sections allows them a way to earn credit in a more helpful environment. 

Limestone has also begun to discuss summer school with actual teachers in a classroom.