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While kids may look forward to summer break, their parents and teachers likely feel a different kind of anticipation: anxiety that students will backtrack on the progress they’ve made during the school year.

Studies – like this one from the Johns Hopkins School of Education – have shown students can lose about two months of grade-level math skills over the summer. And that impact can be even greater for low-income students: They lose more than two months in reading achievement, while their middle-class peers make slight gains.

Researchers say that could be because higher-income students are more likely to have better access to summer enrichment programs, or even just books.

That’s why San Diego Unified’s trying to expand a program with proven results at Chollas-Mead Elementary School. For five weeks, kids spend part of the day inside classrooms, and the rest of it outside for hands-on science lessons.

The district wants to find ways to fund similar programs at about 30 of its highest-need elementary schools. NBC 7’s Catherine Garcia and I have more on that in this week’s San Diego Explained.

Catherine Green

Catherine Green was formerly the deputy editor at Voice of San Diego. She handled daily operations while helping to plan new long-term projects.

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