Students typically return to school in the fall at least a month behind where they were in the spring, but high-quality summer programs can help combat that summer learning loss, the RAND Corp. has found.
In a report that was set for release this week, RAND evaluates past studies and shares new research on summer learning loss and summer programs for K-8 students. It draws conclusive findings on the nature of that learning loss and its disproportionate impact on low-income students, characteristics of successful summer programs that can combat the summer slide, and suggestions for districts that want to implement summer programs but face funding barriers.
It says the best summer programs have small classes, encourage regular attendance, provide individualized instruction, and offer a combination of academic and enrichment activities.
A version of this article appeared in the June 15, 2011 edition of Education Week as Summer Learning Loss