Loudoun County High Schools Beaten Soundly by Virginia Beach in Math SOLs

by James C. Sherlock

This is part 3 of my recent series on Loudoun County schools in general and its high schools in particular. It will confirm what we have already discussed.

I will here compare Loudoun schools in 2018-19 math SOL performance (last year pre-COVID) and other metrics with the schools in Virginia Beach. A spreadsheet with the data for each is posted that includes the same data for Wise County.

Take a look. It is rendered as a heat map. Dark green is outstanding and dark red is bad. The comparison is with statewide averages. The rest of the palette is rendered accordingly.

Loudoun residents won’t like the outcome.

In parts 1 and 2 I showed with state data that Loudoun County high schools greatly outspent and yet underperformed the schools in Wise County in the Virginia coalfields  There are specific Loudoun high schools that drove down the overall results.

The identical comparison between Loudoun and Virginia Beach high schools yielded the same results.


You will note on the spreadsheet that Virginia Beach and Loudoun schools from 2nd through 12th grade posted virtually equal pass rates in math SOLs in 2018-19.

But by the time Virginia Beach kids are in high school, they far surpass their Loudoun counterparts. Four of the Loudoun high schools had math SOL pass rates below the lowest of the Virginia Beach high schools and much lower than the state average.

That means the Virginia Beach kids started out behind and finished well ahead —  a learning curve slope for which every school system strives.

Loudoun, not so much.

DEI in Virginia Beach Schools

Virginia Beach particularly dazzled with the absolutely outstanding math SOL performances of its Black, Hispanic, economically disadvantaged and English learner high schoolers.

The Virginia Beach school board, like that of Loudoun, has said its school system is systemically racist. It has been hiring diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) managers, forming DEI committees hand picked to view with alarm, re-training its teachers to fix their flawed characters and changing “inequitable” policies as fast as it can.

Dr. LaQuiche R. Parrott is the Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Well done. Hard to figure out what she will fix, but easy to see what she may break.

Test results show that many minority and poor kids in Virginia Beach high schools posted what are statistically likely to be the best SOL results in the state.

Those kids may have to slow down in their academic pursuits to make “equity” less of a reality so it can be “repaired” by the school board and its race industry hires.

The school board needs to look up and smell the roses.

And stop driving away the very teachers who helped their students achieve these results just a couple of years ago. They love helping minority and impoverished kids succeed, and they are demonstrably wonderful at it.

But we will excuse them if they don’t appreciate being insulted for their efforts.


The Loudoun school board, the superintendent’s office, the principals’ offices and classroom teachers and their counterparts in Virginia Beach are equally responsible for the results in their high schools.

As a citizen of Virginia Beach and the father and grandfather of kids who went to school here, I am proud of our schools.

I just hope the current school board doesn’t wreck them.

As for the Loudoun County school board and superintendent’s office, if you made excuses among yourselves when the comparison with Wise County made you look incompetent and not a little ridiculous, you are now going to have to try to explain the Virginia Beach comparison.

Good luck.


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9 responses to “Loudoun County High Schools Beaten Soundly by Virginia Beach in Math SOLs”

  1. Bob X from Texas Avatar
    Bob X from Texas

    It’s somehow Trump’s fault that Loudoun schools are failing.

    1. Eric the half a troll Avatar
      Eric the half a troll

      Loudoun Schools are not failing.

      1. Nancy Naive Avatar
        Nancy Naive

        Now, the Republican Party? Well, that’s a different story.

      2. James C. Sherlock Avatar
        James C. Sherlock

        Check the spreadsheet again.

        1. Eric the half a troll Avatar
          Eric the half a troll

          I checked your spreadsheet before I posted. Loudoun Schools are not failing.

      3. James C. Sherlock Avatar
        James C. Sherlock

        Check the spreadsheet again.

  2. James Wyatt Whitehead Avatar
    James Wyatt Whitehead

    Virginia Beach Public Schools have something to be proud of. Even the schools with subgroups that present challenges to achievement performed well. Captain you should contact one of the math department chairs and find out what methods were used to place kids at such a high level of achievement. It would be a good way to gauge the school climate without an admistrative or political filter as well.

    I share your reservations about the equity and inclusion bureaucrats. It is not a matter of what they can fix but what they are going to screw up.

    In a year we will have new data to see how schools have recovered from the last two years. A good school is going to find ways to gauge student ability by October or November in order to implement strategies that will work and have some form of sound data behind it. I do not detect any sense of urgency to answer that important question in advance of testing.

    1. James C. Sherlock Avatar
      James C. Sherlock

      I have forwarded the link to this piece to a member of the Virginia Beach school board who is a friend, and to another friend who is one of VBPS “turnaround” principals. I will tell them to check your comments. Thank you.

  3. Nancy Naive Avatar
    Nancy Naive

    “We must believe in luck. For how else can we explain the success of those we don’t like? ” ― Jean Cocteau

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