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After Summer, Teachers Spend a Month Reteaching Students

Two-thirds of teachers polled in a recent survey said they spend at least a month reteaching students old material when they return from summer vacation.

The survey, administered by the National Summer Learning Association, asked 500 teachers how much time they typically spend teaching students skills they should have learned and retained from the previous grade. Nearly a fourth (24 percent) said at least five to six weeks, while two-thirds claimed at least three to four.

As discussed a number of times on this blog, existing research shows summer learning gaps disproportionately affect low-income students. However, research by the Rand Corp., and more recently, the Partnership for Children and Youth, show high-quality summer programs can help.

Check out my story out this week on summer programs, which discusses how some districts are shifting from traditional remediation-style summer school to academically enriching programs. I mention examples in Grand Rapids, Mich.; Sacramento, Calif.; and Duval County, Fla. Some of the newer programs, like that in Duval County, are using summer to meet other school year academic goals—in its case, implementation of the common core.

In other summer news, recent articles seem to suggest there is also a growing interest in providing access to more summer learning resources digitally. In Virginia, the state department of education has launched a website that provides resources and recommendations for parents and community members on how to reduce summer learning loss in core academic subjects like reading and math.

In New York City, the HIVE Network, a collaborative of local organizations that provide students with virtual and other 21st-century learning in out-of-school hours, has added another 15 organizations to its cadre. And libraries in Pittsburgh are now providing students access to a digital summer reading program called Questyinz that guides elementary students through virtual quests.

National Summer Learning Day is June 21.

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