Keeping kids reading during the summer is often a challenge of inclination, but for some students, it’s a challenge of access. For some kids, they read less during the summer because they don’t have reading and learning materials easily accessible. Johns Hopkins researchers found that the “reading achievement gap can be explained by unequal access to summer learning opportunities during elementary school.”
Esther Jackson Elementary decided to do something about the dip in reading progress during summer vacations. They started Project SOAR (Summer of Accelerated Reading) to expand the literacy focus they strive for into a year-round effort. Project SOAR will combat summertime reading regression with increased reading opportunities, including providing access to reading materials to students as well as parent training resources and meetings.
This grant will allow us to create a community of readers in a supportive environment away from the classroom.” -Jennifer Cassidy, Esther Jackson Elementary principal.
“We are thrilled that we have received a grant to fund a summer-slide prevention reading program,” says Jennifer Cassidy, principal of Esther Jackson Elementary.
Project SOAR has received a $7,000 Innovation Fund Tiny Grant to establish a reading program at the River Crossing apartment complex, home to nearly 130 Fulton County students. There will be a library in the leasing office and weekly lessons with teachers. All student residents will have access to reading materials and lessons, and parents will be able to take advantage of their own training materials to support their children’s summer learning efforts.
Innovation Fund Tiny Grants, awarded by the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement (GOSA), provide traditional public schools, charter schools, and school districts between $1,000 and $7,000 to implement innovative projects that deeply engage students and have a large and lasting impact on the academic environment.