Across the country there is an increased emphasis in school districts on ending the summer slide.
The downtown Davenport Iowa YMCA was barely empty when the new tenants moved in – the summer program for the Davenport Community School District. “When they moved out, we moved right in,” said Shaney Ford, out-of-school time programs specialist for the Davenport Community School District. “It truly has been an all-hands-on-deck collaboration, getting to this place. It’s the first time we’ve ever — ever — been able to do this.”
Schools are increasingly turning their attention to defeating the “summer slide” – and teachers have long lamented the need for a catch up time each fall for students to review skills. Reading skills have been of particular concern.
The program at the Y in Davenport has about 100 kids enrolled. Students who are identified as struggling readers get two hours a day to developing skills for reading, and they receive extra attention.
“We recognized that we needed to take it to the next level,” Ford said of the Davenport Summer programs.. “This is what’s different: It’s curriculum-based. It’s brain-based. It’s scripted and engaging, and we don’t just kill time.”