With the pandemic waning, educators and youth-oriented organizations across the country are focused on providing children with opportunities to accelerate their learning and expand their social-emotional well-being. Summer provides a unique opportunity to do so, and state and local education agencies have unprecedented funding from the American Rescue Plan to support the development and expansion of summer learning and enrichment programs.
The U.S. Department of Education, in collaboration with the National Comprehensive Center and national partners, launched the Summer Learning & Enrichment Collaborative ("The Collaborative") to support states, school districts and community partners in using American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act funds to implement and expand meaningful summer learning and enrichment experiences for students, especially those most impacted by the pandemic.
Throughout the summer of 2021, the Collaborative invited states, school districts, community partners, and other stakeholders to participate in a series of virtual learning opportunities to discuss and share promising practices in planning and implementing summer experiences for all students and student groups. To date, the Collaborative has held over forty topical sessions addressing a wide range of topics from staff recruitment to student attendance, STEM partnerships, developing community-school agreements and many more. More than 20 National Partners, listed below, contributed their time and expertise to building out the programming and supports.
Short videos and collections of resources and practical tools from those sessions are provided here, organized under six broad topics along with videos from informational plenary sessions that provided updates on current issues such as health and safety guidelines for administration of out of school time programs from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Department of Education priorities such as ARP implementation and supporting the social, emotional and academic needs of all students.
Videos and resource materials are also archived by date of presentation; see the events page.
As the Collaborative moves forward, we will keep updating this site with information about future activities and additional resources.
Six Topics: Advice from Expert Practitioners
These six broad topics organize the videos, powerpoints, Q&A, and other resources from the presentations and discussions offered during the Spring and Summer 2021 as part of the Summer Learning and Enrichment Collaborative.
Each topic encompasses a variety of themes related to how states, communities, and districts are employing resources in the American Rescue Plan to provide opportunities for students who have been most affected by the disruptions caused by the pandemic.
Addressing a full range of student needs
Meeting students’ social-emotional needs has become paramount for those who want to help students succeed academically. Program leaders share ideas for creating a positive learning climate and developing community connections to support students and their families.
Attracting/supporting staff for summer programs
Meet the challenge of engaging staff for summer programs by reaching out to new sources and diversifying the pool of educators who work with students. Consider incentives that appeal and supports to help educators maintain their energy and enthusiasm for working with students.
Building school-community partnerships
Learn about how to engage a diverse set of partners, implement effective consultation practices, and build and sustain working relationships. Partnerships are important at every level to accomplish goals for students but they require leadership, effective communication tools, and ongoing attention.
Evidence-based learning and enrichment strategies
Researchers have documented positive outcomes from a variety of programs, leading to recommended design principles and instructional strategies to incorporate in summer plans. Practitioners share how they implement evidence-based principles in different settings.
Tailoring supports to specific populations
Advocates and practitioners offer examples of how to plan and implement academic and enrichment programs adapted to students’ varying learning needs and educational circumstances. Examples include programs that serve rural and tribal students, English learners, and students with disabilities.