Learning Leap: How to Prevent Summer Learning Loss

The Summer Slide: It’s Not Just Fun and Games

It’s only February, not even two months into the new year of 2012.  Even though it’s been a mild winter many of us are still scraping ice from windows, shoveling out the driveway, and wondering how much more snow we’ll have before spring.  However, in many of the school districts around the country they are already thinking about the summertime.  Just not in the way you think!

They are thinking about what they can do to prevent the dreaded “Summer Slide”.  No, that is not the slip & slide that you played with in your backyard as a kid!  In reality, the Summer Slide is a term to describe what happens to struggling students each year when school goes into recess for the summer months.

Don’t get me wrong; summers are great.  Almost everyone has a ton of wonderful memories from their summers growing up; from bar-b-ques to baseball games, from the sea-shore to the mountains, from lemonade to ice cream cones, and a million other iconic summer experiences.

Unfortunately, there is another story about summer.

Summer Learning Loss:

For millions of disadvantaged and struggling students, summertime is a far cry from healthy intellectual stimulation.  Instead, these already struggling students are faced with a long summer of inactivity and it causes their achievement gap to widen.  The results are often irreversible.

Learning Leap Classroom: Summer 2011

In recent years, Catapult Learning has been working with schools and districts to reverse this trend.  Catapult Learning created a summer program called, Learning Leap.  The Learning Leap program combines academic instruction, cultural enrichment, and family involvement over a six week period.  Research shows, students who participate not only improve their academic scores, but are far more likely to continue their education.

In only a few short years the program has proven to be a great success in the districts where it’s been implemented.  In 2010, Learning Leap helped boost the achievement of 3300 students in the Detroit Public School Systems.  “The results were the academic equivalent of a no-hitter”, said Sean McGrew, Catapult Learning’s Director of Research and Evaluation.

Right now the School Partnership Directors at Catapult Learning are out talking to schools and districts throughout the country.  They are looking to expand the reach of the program and help more struggling students to prevent the “Summer Slide”.

Summer will always be summer, filled with all those great memories of fun and freedom!  Although, hopefully it will also be a time where programs like Learning Leap are there for students to stay engaged, enriched, and achieving beyond their expectations!

If you have questions or you would like more information about implementing the Learning Leap program in your schools, please email: info@catapultlearning.com

About: Catapult Learning

Achieving Beyond Expectations: Serving K-12 children who struggle with academics.

We believe the key to unlocking a child’s potential lies within a motivating learning environment that is sensitive to his or her unique instructional needs. That’s why we partner with schools and school districts to better understand the challenges children face, and offer customized solutions that range from small-group K-12 instructional intervention services, to extended-day and summer learning programs, to turnkey professional development and more.

For 35 years, Catapult Learning and our predecessor companies have partnered with education institutions, government agencies, and community groups, providing outcomes-based learning programs that are tailored to individual student needs and produce positive academic results.  Catapult Learning, a privately owned company, is a leading provider of contracted educational services to schools and districts nationwide and last year we provided more than 106,000 services to students in approximately 1,400 schools. We are currently the largest, most experienced provider of contracted educational services to non-public schools in the country.  Our instruction, our services, and our people motivate the students we serve to achieve great success in school and beyond.



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