WHAT WE DO
The Rising Readers program prevents summer reading and learning loss for approximately 300-400 rising first through third grade students in Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) who have been identified as Limited English Proficient (LEP). International House and CMS have partnered to implement this program for the past four years at CMS schools during the summer break.
With LEP students facing the lowest graduation rates in CMS (64% in 2015), Rising Readers is directly addressing one of the largest challenges facing the school system: how to give its growing population of low-income, limited-English students a better chance at a successful academic career. According to CMS, there are currently 8,388 LEP students in grades K-3 alone. Many speak or read little English at home and are more likely than their native English-speaking peers to see their literacy skills deteriorate over the summer break, forcing them to start the next school year at a disadvantage. Rising Readers aims to not only stem this summer learning loss, but improve student English reading and comprehension.
The program is centered around small-group learning, and in 2016 included 68 tutors who worked directly with students under the instruction of experienced CMS teachers. The full-day program is free for all students and features a literacy component in the morning and a science enrichment in the afternoon.