For more than 25 million low-income public school students in America, summer is often anything but a vacation. Instead of a relaxing break to explore new interests and places, it is often a time when children, youth and families struggle to find and afford food to eat and a safe place to be.
PSAYDN is dedicated to expanding summer learning opportunities for children and youth throughout Pennsylvania. Research shows that summers without quality learning opportunities put Pennsylvanian youth at risk for falling behind – year after year – in core subjects like math and reading. Students can lose up to two months’ worth of learning from the previous school year when their minds are not engaged during the summer vacation. Low-income students are especially vulnerable to summer learning loss due to a lack of engagement in high-quality summer learning programs. The math and reading skills low-income students lose each summer are cumulative and contribute significantly to the achievement gap between lower- and higher-income kids.
Summer learning loss, the phenomenon where young people lose academic skills over the summer, is one of the most significant causes of the achievement gap between lower and higher income youth and one of the strongest contributors to the high school dropout rate. For many young people, the summer “opportunity gap” contributes to gaps in achievement, employment and college and career success. (NSLA, 2016)
Summer Learning Day is an annual national advocacy day during the month of July, led by the National Summer Learning Association to elevate the importance of keeping kids learning, safe and healthy every summer