RAND's Summer Learning Study Releases First Outcomes
RAND Corporation released the initial findings of its five-year Summer Learning Study. The demonstration project, funded by The Wallace Foundation, studied the impact that summer programs have on elementary school children. The study, which focuses on addressing the learning losses that take place during vacations from school, brought together Boston school officials and nonprofit leaders to discuss strategies for closing the achievement gap that impacts low-income families. In Boston, 957 students participated in the study. Out of all the participants, 47% were black, 41% were Hispanic, 6% were Asian, and 8% were white.
The study also focused on how to best implement programs to improve outcomes. Out of the seven factors examined, five had a statistically significant association with mathematics or reading outcomes. In regard to mathematics, consist attendance and hours of instruction were linked to better outcomes. In terms of reading, teachers with grade-level experience, the orderliness of the summer sites, and instructional quality were associated with better outcomes. Suggested tips for districts include planning programs that run five to six weeks with scheduled 60-90 minutes a day for mathematics, hiring effective and qualified teachers, and maintaining positive student behavior for outcome improvement.
Read more RAND's Study at Boston Globe