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Summer Literacy Camp: Bridging the gap between students and reading proficiency

Updated: Jun. 8, 2021 at 7:23 PM CDT
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THE SHOALS, Ala. (WAFF) - “The stacks are really high because next year the retention piece goes into effect for third graders. So it’s really, really important that we do everything that we can to make sure that those third graders are proficient by the end of the next school year,” said Muscle Shoals Assistant Superintendent, Dr. Denise Woods.

This year, the Muscle Shoals school district will have 94 students in their K-3 summer literacy camp compared to the 9 students they had last year.

School officials think a large part of that is due to the pandemic.

“I think the increase from last year to this year, some of that is based off of people feeling more comfortable with the pandemic. I do think that’s a piece of it, but I also think it has a lot to do with our communication about the proficiency of their children and reading,” said Dr. Woods.

Parents get to choose whether or not their child goes to the literacy camp.

Dr. Woods said their goal is to bridge the gaps between the students and their reading proficiency level.

“What we’re trying to do is we drill down to the foundational reading skills and we have assessments and diagnostics that we use to try to determine what’s the interference. What’s causing the student an issue that prevents them from being proficient,” said Dr. Woods.

Other school districts in the area also have similar programs.

Russellville School District’s summer literacy camp has 62 students and 56 of them are EL (English Language Learners) students.

They have 109 students in their 21st Century Community Learning Centers program at Russellville Elementary School with 35 EL students.

Franklin County will have its first summer reading camp this year with 185 students from all schools.

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