2016: The Year of Summer Learning!
PMP has believed in the value of summer learning and the repercussions of its loss for the past five years. According to the research done on summer learning loss, students who are not engaged over the summer lose anywhere from two and a half to three and a half months of learning. Then, come September, teachers spend about four to six weeks reviewing the forgotten material. This equates to about a five month loss of education out of a ten-month-long school year.
The implementation of PMP’s Summer Program, allows schools to take on education through an innovative near-peer approach, awarding all students the opportunity to be academically successful throughout the summer, while giving them a break from the typical classroom setting. In order to make 2016 the year of summer learning, three things will need to happen: considerable growth of PMP’s innovative program to more schools than ever before, increase in the awareness around the topic of summer learning through social media and PR, and work with elected officials to advocate for summer education.
As the temperature falls below freezing and the winter coats and hats go on, most people are only dreaming of summer’s warm temperature, while PMP is working hard to get schools signed up for the program. With seven months still to go until the start of the summer program, PMP has already increased school commitments by over 400 percent compared to last year at this time. More school leaders (superintendents, principals, assistant principals, etc.) have PMP on their minds than ever before, and still, the outreach is growing.
While seven months seems early to focus on summer learning, it is a thought that should be on the minds of educators all year round. PMP should not be alone on the stance for how necessary it is for students to engage in learning over the summer, instead, that understanding needs to be universal; from school officials, to parents, and everyone in between. Through social media, PMP has begun to, and will continue to, spread awareness on why summer learning is crucial to a child’s education. Regardless of whether you are a struggling student or a high-flyer, PMP can and should change the life trajectory of every student.
With the expected growth of the program for 2016, we expect the amount of public support and advocates for summer education to grow as well. Last summer, when PMP was nearly half the size that it is expected to be this summer, PMP met with eight council members, all of which loved and supported the organization. This summer, PMP is hoping to increase the number of visits by elected officials in order to increase awareness and funding for summer learning. The opportunity to increase funding for summer learning will give PMP the chance grow even larger in 2017, providing more children the chance to succeed academically.
It was a busy year for education in 2015, the public is acknowledging that there is a flaw in the NYC public education system, the problems have been stated, and the solutions are being created. The need for redemption is prevalent, and Practice Makes Perfect believes that in 2016, we are the answer.