Summer Academies Help to Ensure Success

Summer Academies Help to Ensure Success
Posted on 06/16/2016

By Tamara Mills, Coordinator of Instruction

Worcester County Public Schools believes that each child is unique.  In order to meet the needs of each child, our school system provides a variety of programs and services.  Our goal is to provide children with access to the educational experiences and learning opportunities that will help ensure their success – in school, college, career, and life.

Summer academies are one of the essential learning opportunities, offered to meet the needs of over 800 students each year.  Our school system’s summer academy programs provide learning enrichment and academic support, giving students an academic edge by exposing them to the rigor, expectations and curriculum of the upcoming school year. 

Summer academies are offered in all 13 full-service schools from June 27 through July 28, 2016.  The program will run Monday through Thursday. In our Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten classes, students will focus on school readiness.  In our Grade 1-4 programs, most schools will be offering traditional reading and mathematics programs, supplemented this year by a new, hands-on engineering component.  The Engineering is Elementary program will help students engage in environmental projects from designing humane animal traps to building vehicles out of recyclables.  In grades 5-8, most schools will focus on a STEM-based CSI curriculum.  Students will study crime scene investigation concepts such as forensics, fingerprinting, and DNA, in addition to reading and math curriculum.  The elementary and middle school programs also integrate an enrichment component, offering such classes as art and physical education.  Our high school programs are half day programs which focus on helping students to be college and career ready, offering summer credits and preparing incoming 9th graders with a Freshman Orientation and Mentoring program.  Our summer programs are funded both by the 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant and local funding.

A recent study, entitled Summer Matters: How Summer Learning Strengthens Students’ Success, found students who participate in summer learning significantly increased their academic and social skills.  Another key finding was that students improved their work habits and became more confident in their ability to learn. In addition, students also ended the summer with vocabulary skills which were closer to their grade level.   According to the National Summer Learning Association, research has shown that while gaps in student achievement remain relatively consistent during the school year, the gaps widen significantly during the summer. 

We are looking forward to exciting summer academy programs which will help to ensure the success of our participating students.  If you have additional questions about our summer academies, you may contact me at 410-632-5031 or you may contact the school where your child will be attending in the fall.