The Jackson County Campaign for Grade-Level Reading is creating adventures for kids during the summer months.
Now in its third year, Summer Adventure, a free, four-week summer program, provides an opportunity for students in Jackson County to explore reading in the morning and enjoy an afternoon of exciting enrichment activities.
“We know that when we continue that learning over the summer months then they’re more likely to continue learning over the school year and bridge some of those gaps for children who may be struggling with reading,” says Rachel Williams, Jackson County GLR coordinator.
Students get to experience music, art, math, science and much more from local organizations like ISU Extension, Jackson County Conservation and the Maquoketa YMCA. Those experiences mean a lot to parents like Mindy Williams, whose daughter Bailey is attending the program for the second year.
“I think Summer Adventure is a place where Bailey can go and get her academics, that little refresher and really hone in on some of those skills she’s lacking in,” says Mindy. “It’s a place where she can go and have fun, interact with students that she may not in her own class and learn so much more than just the math and the reading.”
In the 2017-2018 school year, only 77% of 3rd Grade students in Jackson County read at grade level. Last year, 72% of Summer Adventure participants maintained or improved their reading scores over the summer break. As Katie Peterson, Summer Adventure coordinator explains, the work can’t continue without the support of donors and partners.
“These kids are our future, says Katie. They are what the community is going to be as we grow and if we want productive citizens, we need kids who can read. I think that’s the bottom line behind it is if we are able to move the needle on the kids who are proficient in third grade, we’re going to have better outcomes in graduation, we’re going to have better outcomes in students that are ready to go on and get a job and have a good background in a vast variety of areas. I think overall it will make our communities better.”
To support the Jackson County Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, visit www.jacksoncountyglr.org.