In-Person Learning Opportunities More Prevalent in Private Schools than Public Schools
Public and private schools across the country participated in the second round of the
IES School Survey, providing information on the types of learning opportunities they offered fourth- and eighth-grade students in February. The results showed that private schools offered their students in-person learning opportunities at much larger rates than public schools. Ninety-one percent of fourth-graders and eighty-five percent of eighth-graders attended private schools that offered in-person learning opportunities to all students. In contrast, 50 percent of fourth-grade and 42 percent of eighth-grade public students attended schools that did so.
Furthermore, public schools offered students remote learning to a majority of their students while less than half of private schools offered remote learning to all of their students.
As we await future results from the school survey and upcoming NAEP 2022 assessments, previous NAEP data have shown that public and private schools differ in racial/ethnic composition and that larger proportions of private school students reach or exceed
NAEP Proficient in mathematics and reading than public school students. Private, Catholic schools serve around three percent of fourth- and eighth-grade students nationally. They are made up of mostly White students, while more than half of public-school students are non-White. Prior to COVID-19, over 40 percent of Catholic school students scored at or above
NAEP Proficient on grades 4 and 8 mathematics and reading, while not as many public school students reached those benchmarks.
With data from the IES School Survey, we will be able to evaluate how differences in learning modes offered during the COVID-19 pandemic relate to educational outcomes of public and private school students.