Reading is an important skill. It helps you understand the world around you, allowing you to read road signs, text friends and apply for jobs. Reading is a skill, a hobby, and a necessary part of life. Unfortunately, many students in our country do not continue to enhance their reading skills once school is out for the summer.
According to the National Summer Learning Association, more than half of the achievement gap between low- and high-income students can be explained by unequal access to summer learning opportunities. The organization also states that low-income students lose more than two months in reading achievement over the summer, while their middle- and high-income peers see slight gains.
That is why Starr Commonwealth is continuing our dedication to helping children through our summertime Camp Ready Readers Program. Serving kids in Battle Creek and Calhoun County, this program will help strengthen reading and writing skills for students in Kindergarten through 5th grade. We are aiding students to become Super Readers through the encouragement and positive influence of our trained teachers and paraprofessionals, teaching them how to enjoy reading.
That’s not all that the Camp Ready Readers is designed to do, though; it will also give students three weeks in the summer of structured activities, while providing a morning snack and a lunch for each child in the program. We want to provide these students with every chance to succeed, and making sure that they are fed and happy is one way that we can ensure their success.
The best part of this program is that it is completely free for the kids who sign up, increasing the number of students who will be able to attend the camp. All of the funding for this year’s sessions has been provided by grants and by caring donors who want to see how their money can go directly to a child in need.
There are three sessions that parents can sign their child up for, each lasting three weeks – June 22-July 9, July 20-August 6, and August 1-September 3. Each session can hold 60 kids, so Starr will be able to help as many children in the Calhoun County area as possible.
Students in the Camp Ready Readers program will learn a variety of reading-related skills, including letter identification, rhyming, letter sounds and more. By teaching these valuable skills, we can help close the achievement gap in Calhoun County and Battle Creek, preparing these students for life beyond high school and encouraging them to attend college.
With the support of friends, Starr has been able to raise $7,610, over three quarters of the way to our $10,000 goal. This money allows us to provide this camp for free to the children in Calhoun County, and will help us keep the program going for years to come. Without our donors, we would never be able to make a difference in these children’s lives; for that, we say thank you.
If you would like more information on the Camp Ready Readers program, please call Maggie Miller at 269-968-9287 ext. 3245.
If you would like to support the Camp Ready Readers program, please visit www.starr.org/donate.