Orwell Award Announcement SusanOhanian.Org Home


[Susan notes: Sending "those" kids to summer school is such a tired and easy attempt to solve the skill problem. Stephen Krashen offers evidence for a better solution.]

Submitted to Washington Post but not published
06/28/2010

To the editor





Jay Mathews notes that that academic achievement declines for

low-income students over the summer and concludes that "Summer school

is a great tool, if only more students would use it" (June 28). The

decline in reading achievement over the summer, however, is actually

an argument for increased funding for public libraries, not summer

school.



Some of the research reports on the summer slump, including Barbara

Heyns' original study of summer learning published in 1975 and Jimmy

Kim's more recent research, strongly suggest that scores go down

during the summer because low-income children have less access to

public libraries and other sources of books and don't do as much

pleasure reading.



The implication: More funding for public libraries in low-income

areas, and a more cautious approach to increasing time dedicated to

traditional instruction. Too much traditional instruction could limit

time for wide, self-selected voluntary reading, the single most

important factor in improving reading achievement.







Sources:



Heyns, Barbara. 1975. Summer Learning and the Effect of School. New

York: Academic Press.



Kim, Jimmy. 2003. âSummer reading and the ethnic achievement gap,â

Journal of Education for Students Placed at Risk 9, no. 2:169-188.



Jay Mathews: Summer school is a great tool, if only more students

would use it

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/06/27/AR2010062703033_pf.html









Stephen Krashen


FAIR USE NOTICE
This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of education issues vital to a democracy. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information click here. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.