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April 27, 2018
Week in review: How to build a successful school if you’ve never worked in one
We took an inside look this week at a new program that aims to tackle one of the major impediments to creating great…
April 24, 2018
Detroit district adding grades K-2 to summer school to help youngest students boost reading scores
For the first time in years, the Detroit district summer school program will start in kindergarten. District Superintendent Nikolai Vitti recommended…
Summer in the city
June 30, 2016
One in five students at struggling schools forced to attend summer school
About 19 percent of students in the city's low-performing "Renewal" schools must attend summer schools, compared to 6 percent citywide.
Making the grade
July 1, 2015
After rule changes, fewer students held back, sent to summer school
The number of students headed to summer classes has fallen to its lowest level in six years and the share of students held back a grade has declined by half.
summer school wait
June 23, 2015
Budget cuts shut 198 Shelby County high schoolers out of summer school
More students than ever sought summer school spots, but declining enrollment overall meant the district had to cut its spending by 35 percent.
June 17, 2015
Low-income students stand to lose more with summer learning loss
"Summer slide" is real, but many programs that combat summer learning loss face an uncertain future in Shelby County.
June 10, 2015
Record summer meals distribution expected in Memphis
Organizers with Shelby County Schools expect community partners to hand out 650,000 lunches to hungry children this summer — an increase of 50,000 over last year.
Updated June 9, 2015
Fewer summer school course offerings leave Shelby County students on a waitlist
Shelby County Schools' summer school registration closes with a wait list of 200 students and many parents worrying whether their children will get the courses they need.
June 4, 2015
Shelby County Schools moves to online registration
Weary of long registration lines and last-minute enrollees, Tennessee's largest public school district makes the digital switch to address enrollment hassles.
Summer in the city
July 15, 2014
Fariña talks future of Summer Quest on visit to Bronx school
Chancellor Carmen Fariña met with students, administrators, and even a few chickens on a visit to a summer enrichment program at P.S. 154 in the South Bronx on Tuesday. Fariña was there to promote Summer Quest, a free, five-week program that seeks to stem summer learning loss in Brooklyn and the South Bronx.
July 3, 2014
Summer school enrollment falls sharply after city reduces role of state tests
The steep decline comes less than three months after officials announced they were changing grade promotion standards put in place by the Bloomberg administration during a decade-long push to ban “social promotion.”
April 2, 2014
City set to overhaul promotion policy, though specifics are few and far between
The city is poised to revamp how it decides whether a student should be promoted to the next grade, lowering the stakes of the state math and English tests in the wake of new pressure from state lawmakers.
August 20, 2013
NYC summer program cuts testing to weigh learning benefits
Jennifer Rosario (right), a social worker with Partnership with Children, teaches students from the South Bronx Academy for Applied Media to make smoothies. An ambitious pilot to stem summer learning loss for low-income New York City students wrapped up its second year this month. But officials will have to wait a little longer before they can tell for sure how much it's working. When the pilot, called NYC Summer Quest, began last summer, city education officials wanted to test students to measure how much the gap narrowed by after finishing the five-week program. They asked schools to give the students an extra set of tests at the end and beginning of the school year. But it didn't work out as planned. Principals in participating schools quickly pointed out that June and September were too hectic to make their highest-need children sit for more tests. "It was really hard on the schools," said Ali Tan, Summer Quest's program director at the Department of Education.
July 11, 2013
Summer Quest kicks off second year with NYC-themed learning
Chancellor Dennis Walcott asked elementary school students questions about the maps they were making of New York City and the Bronx. This morning, after the class of rising fourth-graders at P.S. 211 established what they want to know about the Bronx, they divided into four different groups to come up with projects that would help teach them. One group wanted to know what animals live in the Bronx, so they decided to create a magazine about wildlife. Another group wanted to know what some of the most famous restaurants are in the Bronx, so they're creating a menu for their own Arthur Avenue eatery. Their project-based learning is the hallmark of the Department of Education's Summer Quest program, which is designed to prevent students from losing ground over the summer. It differs from regular summer school, which is geared toward helping students pass state math and reading exams, because it enrolls students who struggle but are not the lowest-performing, a rarity among city-funded summer programs. Summer Quest, which is part of Chancellor Dennis Walcott's focus on middle schools, launched last year with 1,120 elementary and middle school students in 12 schools and includes 1,800 students this year. Community-based organizations including the Children's Aid Society, Building Educated Leaders for Life, and Good Shepherd Services have partnered with 11 South Bronx schools to provide staff and support services for five-week, nine-hour-a-day program. At P.S. 211, which Chancellor Dennis Walcott toured Thursday morning, the theme for all Summer Quest learning is "Our New York City." Students in different classrooms drew maps of the Bronx and its landmarks, sketched and shared objects that were significant to their cultures, learned to cook a vegetable frittata, and practiced a choreographed dance routine — which Walcott enthusiastically joined.
June 28, 2013
City schools struggle to connect students with summer options
Lettie Edgerton says it's a struggle to keep her granddaughter Kyndal busy over the summer. Jovani Nias’s 21 years as a mail carrier in Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn has given her unique insight into how families in the neighborhood spend the year. Now that school is out, she said, differences among families even in the same building are even more obvious. “You see some kids leaving for programs or summer school, and the other kids are just out, hanging on the corners," Nias said. Which direction a student takes over the summer can change the course of her education. Researchers have pegged students’ academic regression — known as the “summer slide” — as the equivalent of two months of school or more. Students who are occupied in summer learning are more likely to sustain their progress from the previous year. But whether city students can avoid the summer slide is often a matter of luck, depending largely on how their school’s approach to summer learning and their family’s access to information that schools don’t always provide. “There are opportunities that are invisible in my community that are more visible in other communities,” said Sheryl Davis, a Brooklyn parent. “We all have that conversation, what are you kids doing this summer? And I find that a lot of schools do not help with that.”
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