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Oswego School District 308 summer school would focus on reading, math

Plans to create a summer school program for Oswego School District 308 students suffering from learning loss because of the COVID-19 pandemic were presented to the Board of Education on Monday evening, Feb. 22.

Associate Superintendent for Educational Services Faith Dahlquist told the board that the district has received an additional $495,000 in federal Title 1 funds that must be used before Sept. 1 or be lost.

The money cannot be used to pay existing bills and must be used to support struggling and/or at-risk students, Dahlquist said.

Dahlquist told the board that administrators are proposing to use the funds “to create a robust summer school program for students that are behind in reading and/or math.”

Usually, she explained, the federal funds are allocated only to schools that fall under the Title 1 designation. But the district has received special accommodations to use the funds at all of its schools, provided it identifies and uses the funds to support students struggling in math, reading, or social/emotional learning.

Struggling students would be identified through “teacher identification and assessment,” Dahlquist said.

Administrators estimate that the program could serve about 2,200 students, using four schools as summer school sites with transportation provided.

Committees would be formed to assist with the development of the programs, focusing on items including the length of the program, the length of each day, materials needed, hiring process, coordination with summer schools for special education, criteria for student invitation and a process to monitor the effectiveness of the program, according to the proposal.

When questioned by board member Alison Swanson, Dahlquist said that the district is mulling a remote learning component for its summer school program, but the majority of instruction would be offered through in-person learning.

The board will next meet at 7 p.m., Monday, March 1, in the auditorium of Oswego East High School, 1525 Harvey Road, Oswego, where a public forum will be held, as well.

Source: The Daily Chronicle

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