Preliminary results show that early grade students who spent time in Tennessee’s summer literacy camps showed 4% gains in reading skills, Chalkbeat reports.
The data reflect the scores of about half of the 8,000 1st through 3rd graders who attended the camps, which are funded by the Tennessee Department of Education’s Ready to be Ready grant program.
The program, which included 200 schools this past summer, is part of the state’s initiative to improve literacy skills among students.
The results show that summer is a valuable time to provide intervention for students that are reading below grade level. But not all schools have state or district funds to provide summer learning opportunities. The National Summer Learning Association provides a resource guide that discusses how to find partners, such as nonprofit organizations and other government agencies, to assist with funding. It also lists a variety of federal grants that can be used for summer programming, depending on the population served.
The organization recommends that school leaders don’t wait until spring to start planning a summer program, but instead start the process in the fall or no later than January. The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, a nationwide initiative, also provides research that can be used to advocate for summer programs as well as information on how to partner with libraries and museums.