Summit54 is delighted to have again been chosen to receive an Aspen Community Foundation grant for 2024. Summit54 will use the ACF grant of $21,000 to help sustain its year-round academic and life enrichment programming for more than 850 elementary-aged children in the Roaring Fork Valley. Summit54 has supported more than 8000 young children during the past 12 years.
8,000 RFV kids and counting get big boost. After 12 years of heading a program to give elementary school-aged kids in the Roaring Fork Valley an academic boost during summers, Terri Caine has learned a few things herself.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 13, 2023
Contact: Terri Caine, Executive Director
Registration for the FREE Summer Advantage program is currently available for Kinder through 5th grade students in Basalt, Carbondale and Glenwood Springs.
Applications for Teachers and Teacher Assistants are also being accepted.
- Program dates: June 19 – July 21 2023, M-F, from 8:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
- Program locations: at Basalt Elementary School, Crystal River Elementary School and Glenwood Springs Elementary School. Daily free bus transportation is provided by the Roaring Fork Schools.
The Summer Advantage FREE academic and life enrichment program is available to all elementary aged children who live in the Roaring Fork Schools’ boundaries (13 schools). The program is sponsored by Summit54 and Roaring Fork Schools.
Dr. Jesus Rodriguez, Roaring Fork Schools Superintendent, expresses the importance of the Summer Advantage program stating, “We are pleased to partner with Summit54 for the twelfth season of Summer Advantage. I grew up attending summer programming like Summer Advantage and know that these kinds of partnerships are essential for some students to continue having a safe place to learn and play over the summer. I truly appreciate Summit54 for making this opportunity possible for our students here in the Roaring Fork Valley.”
Each program day Monday-Thursday includes:
- Community time during breakfast,
- Focused Kids brain exercises to reduce stress and prepare to learn,
- Two hours of literacy,
- One hour of math,
- A hot nutritious lunch,
- A physically active 50 minute recess, and
- Two fun afternoon enrichment programs, each 55 minutes in duration
The enrichment programs include classes such as art, music, dance, video game programming, and environmental studies. Scholars have the same two enrichment classes on Mondays and Wednesdays and two other enrichment classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
FunFridays are action packed with activities, games, field trips, a student-led community service project and a visit to Colorado Mountain College.
All 70 Summer Advantage educators participate in a mandatory one-week teacher training. Teachers and Teaching Assistants learn how to be more effective educators and social/emotional coaches. By placing high quality teachers in our classrooms with no higher than a 1:11 educator-to-student ratio, we ensure personalized instruction and mentoring.
Over our 10-year history, participants gain an average of 2.5 – 4 months in reading and math skills during the five-week Summer Advantage program while having a blast! Our educators make learning fun.
Summit54 partners with Roaring Fork Schools and Summer Advantage USA to provide this program FREE of charge to participants. Many other local organizations also provide services such as the USDA Summer Food Program, Focused Kids, Valley Settlement, and Mountain Family Health Centers.
Student registration is currently available on-line at https://secure.infosnap.com/family/gosnap.aspx?action=36329&culture=en (English) and https://secure.infosnap.com/family/gosnap.aspx?action=36329&culture=es (Spanish).
Registration is also available via phone: 1-866-924-7226 (*9 for Spanish).
Applications for teachers and teacher assistants are also available on-line at www.Summeradvantage.org.
June 20, 2022
CONTACT: TERRI CAINE/SUMMIT54
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Summit54 Summer Advantage program began on Monday, June 20th – New program site at Ross Montessori School
Summit54 and its partners, Roaring Fork School District and Ross Montessori School, welcomed 650 elementary students today for five weeks of free academic and life enrichment programming, M-F from 8:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Students from all 13 elementary schools in the Lower Valley were invited to attend the District sponsored program at Basalt Elementary School, Crystal River School and Glenwood Springs Elementary School.
New this year, Ross Montessori School is hosting a program for 100 Montessori rising first through seventh grade students. “We are thrilled to be able to offer an opportunity for children to keep learning this summer with Summit54’s sponsorship of the Summer Advantage program. These young scholars thrive when they have exposure to new ideas and lessons,” said Erin Beaudette, Director of Student Services at Ross Montessori.
Enthusiasm for the program continues to grow throughout the Valley. “We’ve had far more interest this year from families who want their children to attend the program, which is super exciting,” said Kyle-Leigh Berry, Program Manager for Crystal River Elementary School. “It is truly rewarding to be a part of this program because in the Fall, I can always tell which students attended Summer Advantage. They’re ready to move forward with new material without needing to review the prior year’s material.”
“Summer Advantage is different from the school year because alongside their in-class learning, scholars also experience learning outside of the school building, in their community during weekly field trips,” said Molly Peterson, Program Leader for Glenwood Springs Elementary School. “I think the program is successful because the teachers have fun and the students have fun while they learn through the summer.”
“One of the things that I like most about the program is the enrichment classes we have in the afternoons,” said Danielle Bailey, Program Leader for Glenwood Springs Elementary School. “Teachers teach classes they are passionate about and share their excitement with the scholars in the program. Who knows, the enrichment classes the scholars take today could spark an interest they pursue in the future.”
The award-winning Summer Advantage program has historically generated an average 2+ month gain in math and reading during the five-week program. Without access to a high-quality summer academic program, students typically regress up to three months during the long break. (White, 1906; Heyns,1978; Cooper et al, 1996; Downey et al, 2004; Alexander, Entwisle & Olson, 2007). COVID-19-related learning loss combined with the usual summer slide is expected to have ripple effects for years to come, which makes this summer’s program more important than ever.
The RFS District and Ross Montessori both provide facilities, utilities, janitorial service, computers, internet access, IT support, food service, bus transportation, and parent and teacher outreach; and both contribute approximately 10-15% of the total fee paid to Summer Advantage USA for implementing its award-winning summer academic and life enrichment program at their school sites. Summit54 raises the balance of the annual program cost from local governmental bodies, foundations, businesses and generous full-time and part-time residents.
Historically, 84% of the District scholars enrolled are Latino; 76% are English Language Learners and 74% receive free and reduced lunch during the school year. “Our mission is to help bolster academic abilities among all elementary aged children in the Lower Roaring Fork Valley,” said Terri Caine, Founder and Executive Director of Summit54. “This program is successful because kids enjoy the program and think it is fun. The morning begins with breakfast in the classroom where educators strive to develop personal connections with their students, after breakfast, all classes use Focused Kids@ for a few minutes of engaging brain exercises to let go of stress and prepare the brain to learn, then we have two hours of literacy and one hour of math. We work hard to make learning fun with interactive games and small group interactions. With two educators per classroom of no more than 22 students, we provide a great deal of personal attention to every scholar. We also have a Spanish speaking educator in every classroom. The rest of the day includes a hot healthy lunch, outdoor recess, and two afternoon enrichment programs such as art, music, drama, dance, karate, and yoga M-Th. By ending the day with enriching and entertaining activities, the children go home remembering all the fun they had. We also promote the Friday field trips all week, building excitement for the conclusion of the week and leaving scholars with fond memories to savor through the weekend.”
Although this is Summit54’s 10th consecutive year of providing FREE summer academic and life enrichment programming in the Roaring Fork Valley, it is the ninth year of Summer Advantage. During the summer of 2020, when schools were closed due to Covid, Summit54 provided programming for students in 23 unique locations using regional parks and other outdoor locations. The 501c3 also began free after-school programming in 2020/21school year to help children who had fallen behind due to Covid-related school closures and the move to on-line learning. Summit54 will continue its free after-school small group tutoring program during the 2022/23 school year.
For additional information about the Summit54 sponsored Summer Advantage program with the Roaring Fork School District and Ross Montessori School, please visit www.Summit54.org
ADDITIONAL PROGRAM SITE AT ROSS MONTESSORI SCHOOL FOR 2022
Summit54 is pleased to announce that the 501c3 and Ross Montessori School have formed a new partnership to host the Summer Advantage program at the State Charter School campus. The new program site is anticipated to serve 100 additional students this summer, bringing the total students served each summer from 550 to 650 in the Lower Roaring Fork Valley.
“All students who live within the Roaring Fork School’s district boundaries have always been welcome to participate in the annual program, sponsored by Summit54 and Roaring Fork Schools,” explained Summit54 Executive Director Terri Caine. “Although we annually serve about 550 elementary aged children each summer, our historical participation among students who attend charter, private or parochial schools has not been as high as Summit54 would like.”
Ross Montessori Head of School Sonya Hemmen was determined to increase participation in the Summer Advantage program among her students and offered her school as an additional program site. Her idea has proven effective, as 92 Montessori students have already registered for the program compared to historical tallies of about five Montessori students per summer.
Hemmen says she was determined to provide an academic program for her students this summer because of the pandemic. “The many times we needed to isolate and quarantine took a terrible toll on our students. We are seeing some of the biggest gaps in literacy, numeracy and socialization that I’ve seen in 12 years.”
“I thought about piecing together small group Montessori tutoring, but after seeing the Summer Advantage presentation I was sold on the program,” said Hemmen. “Even though Summer Advantage is vastly different from the Montessori model, I believe it is a great idea, educationally, to give our students five weeks of additional time in a substantially different format. I want to try this as something new to give our students. I see it as an opportunity for our students to learn the same skills with different teachers and curriculum. I wanted to host our own site because our parents feel comfortable with their children in familiar surroundings with their same school bus routes.”
As testimony to Hemmen’s commitment to the Ross program, she and one other person, will be driving the Montessori school buses each day and she and their on-site principal will be making all the lunches each afternoon. “We’re all in and very excited to be able to offer additional academic and life enrichment time for our students using a different philosophy and program. Ross Montessori has always had a strong community which I believe will only be strengthened with the addition of the Summer Advantage program.”
Summit54 created a partnership with Ross Montessori based on the same model used historically with RFS. The District and Ross Montessori both provide facilities, utilities, janitorial service, computers, internet access, IT support, food service, bus transportation, and parent & teacher outreach; and both contribute approximately 10% of the total fee paid to Summer Advantage USA for implementing their award-winning program at their school sites. Summit54 contributes the balance of the program cost.
“Our mission is to help bolster academic abilities among elementary aged children in the Lower Roaring Fork Valley. If we can increase student participation within our service area by using an additional school site, we are happy to do so,” explained Caine.
Registration for the Roaring Fork Valley Summer Advantage program is open to all elementary aged children who reside within the RE-1 school district boundaries. Programs will be held at Basalt Elementary School, Crystal River Elementary School, Glenwood Springs Elementary School and Ross Montessori School. The registration deadline for the FREE five-week academic and life enrichment program is May 13th.
Student registration is available on-line at www.Summeradvantage.org in both Spanish and English. Registration is also available via phone: 1-866-924-7226 (*9 for Spanish).
Applications for teachers and teacher assistants are also available on-line at www.Summeradvantage.org.
Nonprofit stepping up for education during the COVID crisis. Summit54 helping kids with academics when they need it most.