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Districts plan to offer summer learning

Meaghan Gauthier

ALPENA — Several Northeast Michigan school districts are planning to offer summer school for students to help them reinforce or catch up on subjects learned in school this year.

Alpena Public Schools, Alcona Community Schools and Onaway Area Community School District are among those who will have summer school offerings.

Onaway Superintendent Rod Fullerton said with the exception of last summer, the school usually has a summer school every summer. Since the coronavirus pandemic has impacted student learning, summer school might look a little different.

“This year we’re anticipating there to be slightly more kids and a little bit longer — we’re doing an 8-week program and we’re also going to try to provide transportation, which is something we don’t usually do for summer school programming,” he said.

Fullerton said they will be targeting students from Kindergarten through eighth grade for the program with the focus of the program to be on reading and math.

Meaghan Gauthier, APS assistant superintendent for K-12 Curriculum, recently told the board of education’s Curriculum and Technology Committee she was putting a budget together and would be recruiting teachers for summer school and informing families of summer learning opportunities within the next month.

Gauthier said learning for kindergarten through second grade students would focus on literacy while students in third through fifth grade would focus on both reading and math. Summer learning for junior high school students would focus on reading and “key math standards.” High school students would be focused on credit recovery.

“I will have all of the nuts and bolts laid out for you next month,” she told the committee.

Alcona Community Schools Superintendent Dan O’Connor said the district will be doing a three week “jump start” the first two weeks in August.

O’Connor said the district would help students in kindergarten through eighth grade recover a bit of learning that may have been lost because of the up-and-down school year. He said it would also serve as a nice jump start into what school officials hope will be a more stable school year this fall.

Summer school for high school students would primarily consist of credit recovery.

“Credit recovery for our high school students will be ongoing throughout the summer,” he said.

O’Connor said the district will utilize federal Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief funds, which will be used to pay teachers for summer school.

Calls to Rogers City Area Schools Superintendent Nick Hein, Hillman Community Schools and Atlanta Community Schools Superintendent Carl Seiter, and Posen Consolidated Schools Superintendent Michelle Wesner were not immediately returned.

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