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School districts, state leaders looking at how to help students achieve greater academic success this summer

CMS students are learning to be leaders in a technologically savvy and globally competitive world. But often, a learning gap exists.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — With summer around the corner, school districts and state leaders are looking ahead to how to help students recover from COVID-related learning loss.

CMS launching 2022 Expanded Learning Programming

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools is launching its 2022 Expanded Learning Programming to achieve greater academic success.

According to a news release, each day, CMS students are learning to be leaders in a technologically savvy and globally competitive world. But often, a learning gap exists from the end of one school year to the start of the next.

This is where expanded, or in some cases, extended learning opportunities play a role. These programming opportunities will provide additional, and much-needed learning and teaching support for students during June, July, and August. 

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Expanded Learning Programs for 2022

  • Read to Achieve Summer Camp – Rising 3rd and 4th graders who are below grade level in literacy can participate. The district’s contracted vendor, University Instruction LLC, Public Consulting Group (PCG) will operate this program. Dates: June 20-July 31; Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. 
  • Bridge/Accelerator Camp – Rising 9th graders needing support as they transition into high school can participate. Focus areas will include Math 1 preparation, career and workforce development and social-emotional well-being. A physical enrichment component is also included. Dates: June 27-July 29; Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. The camp will be held at West Charlotte HS, Northwest School of the Arts; West Mecklenburg HS, Garinger HS, Rocky River HS, Julius L. Chambers HS, Harding University HS and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Academy.
  • English Learner (EL) Elementary Newcomer Language Program – This program will focus on intensive language development in English Language Arts and Math for rising 3rd-5th grade novice and newcomer English Learners with an opportunity to incorporate art, movement, and technology. Students will explore, play, and engage in rigorous content that is aligned with core curriculum topics and themes to prepare them for the upcoming school year. Dates: June 20-July 21; Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Locations: Idlewild Elementary, Newell Elementary and South Pine Academy.
  • English Learner (EL) Secondary Newcomer Language Program –  A four-week EL program for novice, newly-enrolled students rising to grades 6th-12th. This program will support content and language development to prevent summer loss and support students with being prepared for better success in the upcoming school year. Students will participate in sessions with certified EL teachers as well as complete personalized self-paced tasks. Dates: June 20-July 21; Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Locations: Garinger HS, Julius L. Chambers HS and Harding University HS.
  • High School Graduate on Time – This provides seniors an opportunity to complete their course requirements and graduate at the end of the summer program. Dates: June 13-August 3; Monday-Thursday onsite or virtual.
  • High School Credit Recovery – Any high school student may obtain one unit of new coursework or two units of recovered coursework to offset any failed core content course. June 13-Dates: Aug. 3; Monday-Thursday onsite or virtual. 

Free transportation and free breakfast and lunch will be provided for all programs except High School Graduate on Time and High School Credit Recovery. Registration for all expanded learning programs will occur at the individual school. Parents interested in exploring any of these programs for their student(s) should contact their school directly. 

South Carolina funding for summer, after-school programs

The South Carolina Department of Education announced they're giving $14.5 million in grant money to community programs. The funding is for summer and after-school programs aimed at COVID-related learning loss in disadvantaged communities.

Wings for Kids, based in Charleston, South Carolina, helps address social-emotional learning. It is one of the groups that will see some of that funding from the South Carolina Afterschool Alliance

Bridget Laird, CEO of Wings for Kids, said she is excited about the opportunity to grow. 

"We are expanding to rural programs within South Carolina, where we will be running after-school programs," Laird said. "They're focused on life skills, such as how to behave well how to make good decisions, how to build healthy relationships, persevere, communication skills, all wrapped into what we call social-emotional learning." 

South Carolina Education Department is partnering with South Carolina Afterschool Alliance. The first year of funding is expected to be directed to 45 organizations, potentially benefiting four thousand students. 

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