Should summer vacation be abolished?
July 25, 2013 1:03 PM Subscribe
There are few more cherished nostrums in American life than the importance of equal opportunities. Unfortunately, one of them is the importance of summer vacation...
posted by bookman117 (136 comments total)
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A 2011 RAND literature review concluded that the average student “loses”
about one month’s worth of schooling during a typical summer vacation, with the impact disproportionately concentrated among low-income students. “While all students lose some ground in mathematics over the summer,” RAND concluded, “low-income students lose more ground in reading while their higher-income peers may even gain.” Most distressingly, the impact is cumulative. Poor kids tend to start school behind their middle-class peers, and then they fall further behind each and every summer, giving teachers and principals essentially no chance of closing the gap during the school year.
Karl Alexander, Doris Entwisle, and Linda Steffel Olson of Johns Hopkins University have research from Baltimore indicating that a majority of the achievement gap between high- and low-socioeconomic-status students
can be attributed to differences in summer learning loss. Even worse, for many poor kids, subsidized school lunches on which they depend for sustenance essentially vanish
during the summer months, leaving them both undertaught and underfed.