Summer Providers Prepare to Reverse The Impact of COVID-19 on Atlanta’s Students
Atlanta, GA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 05/27/2020 --In order to combat the long-term impact of COVID-19 on Atlanta's most vulnerable students, eight Atlanta-based organizations have formed the Atlanta Summer Program Leaders Collective (ASPLC), which includes Artportunity Knocks, Breakthrough Atlanta, CEISMC at Georgia Tech, Horizons Atlanta, Keeping Pace, La Amistad, Reach for Excellence, and Odyssey Atlanta. Together during the summer months, the collective serves more than 3,000 students from more than 13 counties, 75 zip codes and 160 schools. The goal of ASPLC is to address detrimental learning loss, summer slide, as well as food insecurity. It is also the goal of the collective to address connections to adults and to send out counselors who can identify trauma in students.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, ASPLC will address learning loss, social isolation and trauma, food insecurity caused by school closures and extended periods of time at home with innovative, fun and collaborative virtual programming. Summer virtual camps and summer feeding programs start as early as June 1. Some of the programs to be offered include: summer meals for students and their families, science, coding, engineering, art, literacy and math. Programs will be accessible to students in grades Pre-K through 12. A variety of intervention and SEL programs will also be available through some of the organizations.
Even under normal circumstances, Atlanta's low-income students face significant achievement gaps. According to a report from Learn4Life, the Metro Atlanta Regional Education Partnership, 28 percent of these students are proficient in math by eighth grade, compared to 67 percent of their more affluent peers. What will happen when students miss 11 weeks of school? "One thing we have learned during all of this is that community care matters, and it's the responsibility of all of Atlantans to care for the weakest among us," says Monique Shields, Executive Director of Breakthrough Atlanta and initiator of ASPLC.
Atlanta Summer Program Leaders Collective is asking for the community's help. Here are some ways to help ASPLC reverse the impact of COVID-19 on Atlanta's children:
- Please fulfill your outstanding donation pledges as soon as possible to ensure organizations have the necessary resources to serve our students this summer
- Consider making larger donations to nonprofits with long track records in the Atlanta community versus funding new efforts
- Invest in ASPLC to help remove competition and encourages collaborative projects
- Help ASPLC locate and acquire additional technology: hardware, software, and internet connectivity for Atlanta's students
- Partner with ASPLC and/or other nonprofits, school districts and government agencies who are addressing learning loss and food insecurity
About Breakthrough Atlanta
Founded in 1996, Breakthrough Atlanta pursues a dual mission to increase academic opportunity for highly motivated, underserved students and get them into college, ready to succeed; and to inspire and develop the next generation of teachers and educational leaders. Breakthrough Atlanta is a partner program of The Lovett School. Visit BreakthroughAtlanta.org to learn more.
About Reach for Excellence
Founded in 2001 by the Society of Mary and hosted at Marist School, Reach for Excellence offers a tuition-free, three year academic and leadership enrichment program to underserved middle school students from families with limited financial resources. Reach's mission is to empower determined learners and expand their possibilities in the classroom, in the community, and in life. For more information, visit www.reachforexcellence.org.
About Artportunity Knocks Inc.
Artportunity Knocks' was founded in 2009 with the mission to empower youth to make positive and smart choices while increasing opportunities in the Arts, Education, Community Service, and Bridging Cultures. The organization specializes in being a "one-stop-shop" for over a dozen forms of STEM and Arts (STEAM) including: visual art, dance, acting, theater, filmmaking, music, coding, video game design, robotics and much more. To learn more information about Artportunity Knocks and it's STEAM n'Meals Program, visit www.artportunityknocks.org.
LaAmistad is a community-supported non-profit organization that works to empower low-income Latino students and families to achieve their ultimate potential. Founded in 2001, our mission is to prepare members of this underserved community for success through our academic and life-enrichment programs. Therefore, LaAmistad provides a comprehensive programming structure that incorporates afterschool tutoring, parent engagement, Adult language courses as well as educational summer enhancement programs. We commit to our mission, all in an effort to achieve our vision of one day empowering Latino students and families to achieve life-long self-sufficiency. To learn more information about LaAmistad, visit www.laamistadinc.org.
About Horizons Atlanta
Horizons Atlanta is a transformational, community-centered education program working to close the opportunity and achievement gaps for underserved children in Kindergarten through 8th grade across ten program sites throughout metro Atlanta. Horizons Atlanta's mission is to close the opportunity and achievement gap through high-quality academics in an engaging and enriching summer learning program. We accomplish this through a transformational, tuition-free, summer learning program that helps eliminate critical barriers to success that many of our children face. Our signature six-week learning program focuses not just on academics, but also arts, sports, and college and career exploration. Horizons partners with independent schools, colleges, and universities across the metro area to host programs and recruit skilled, professional teachers as staff. Horizons students, who come to Horizons with a broad range of academic ability, gain two to three weeks of reading and math skills each summer, learn to swim and enjoy year-round support. For more information about Horizons Atlanta, please visit www.horizonsatlanta.org.
About Keeping Pace
Founded in 2006, Keeping Pace is a summer program at Pace Academy. Keeping Pace strives to close the achievement gaps and promote intellectual curiosity among middle- and high-school students from communities with limited to no summer opportunities. It is our goal to help the students reach their potential and avoid summer slide. Staffed by Pace faculty members, students, and alumni, Keeping Pace offers an academic curriculum and activities including swimming, art, tennis and standardized test prep. It also includes enrichment programming with activities ranging from guest speakers to field trips. Visit www.paceacademy.org/programs/keeping-pace to learn more.