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We regret that we gave permission for a Times-Dispatch photographer to visit Sandston Elementary School for Sunday’s front-page story that published under the headline "Failing marks." While we were aware of the story’s premise (federal data that show falling student literacy rates among fourth graders in Virginia), Sunday’s paper did not make clear to the reader that we were asked to provide access to a school where reading scores actually saw gains. Sandston Elementary’s reading scores, among all students, have risen over the past three school years and the school meets Virginia’s full standards of accreditation. The school leaders, teachers and students have worked very hard to achieve these gains and, even though the distinction was made in the online version of the story, it was disappointing to not see that recognized in the print caption.
Director, Communications and Community Engagement,
Henrico County Public Schools.