As the school year comes to a close, kids across Sacramento are looking forward to summer vacation while many parents scramble to make plans to keep their children busy and engaged in learning activities over the long break.
For many families, summer camps, learning programs and even tutors will fill the summer learning gap. But for some families, structured summer programs are unaffordable. This lack of access to educational activities puts these children at higher risk of losing a portion of what they learned during the school year – and can even jeopardize their continued advancement.
Unfortunately, summer learning loss hits children from low-income families the hardest. On average, students’ achievement scores decline to reflect about a month’s worth of school-year learning loss. Declines in achievement are greatest in math and learning loss seems to increase among students in higher grades.
This phenomenon, also called “the summer slide” or “summer setback,” contributes to the achievement gap between children from low-income families and their more affluent peers. The achievement gap leads to an opportunity gap, which can put some children at a lifelong disadvantage.
Comcast is committed to being part of the solution to ensure all children have at-home access to digital technology, a robust online learning portal and enriching online experiences over the summer – and throughout the year.
Access to the internet is an essential learning tool in our technology-driven era. That’s why Comcast’s Internet Essentials offers high-speed home Internet for just $9.95 + tax per month, low-cost computer equipment and a variety of free online and in-person digital learning opportunities for eligible students and their families.
High-speed internet access at home is an important solution to the summer setback. But some Sacramento communities lag behind in access to high-speed broadband at home.
Nationwide, about 65 percent of U.S. adults have broadband internet service at home.
In Sacramento County, 82 percent of households have some type of broadband internet subscription. However, more than 70,000 Sacramento County households do not have internet.
Comcast’s work to provide every student in Sacramento the opportunity to succeed is rooted in the understanding that unequal access to information technology creates disparities in educational, social and economic achievement.
That’s why Internet Essentials is available to residents in a Comcast service area who have a child eligible for free or reduced school lunch. And, for those who attend a school where 40 percent or more of the population receives free or reduced lunch, the entire school is eligible for the program. Click here to learn more.
Here are some additional ideas to combat summer learning loss and promote learning year-round:
- Offered on Friday and Saturday evenings in Sacramento, Teen Hubs and Teen Tech Hubs offer youth a range of skill building and learning opportunities in fun, engaging environments.
- Sacramento’s Public Library system has a Summer Reading program where families can earn prizes for reading.
- The University of the Pacific has Summer Reading programs for children of all ages in Sacramento.
- The Comcast Internet Essentials Learning Center has a variety of educational tools, including links to free, high-quality e-learning courses for children and adults.
- Many websites offer quality, free educational content for kids. Some good options include PBS Kids, FunBrain, National Geographic Kids, Starfall, NASA Kids’ Club, HowStuffWorks.com and others.
- Khan Academy is a free resource that offers practice exercises and instructional videos in a variety of subject areas, at every academic level.