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Title 1 summer school kicks off in Tigard-Tualatin School District

Free breakfast and lunch program also runs throughout the summer

This summer, at-risk and struggling elementary schoolers in the Tigard-Tualatin School District will be getting the extra learning support they need.

Summer school programs at Title 1 elementary schools across the district will give incoming kindergarteners get a head start on school and help elementary school students keep in academic shape during their break.

Students who could benefit from extra academic support were invited to participate, said Susan Stark Haydon, the district’s spokeswoman.

“We always worry that during the summer, students lose achievement gains,” said Stark Haydon. “This gives kids a chance to maintain and get a head start on the coming school year.”

Title 1 is a federal program that provides funding to schools serving a large percentage of low-income or otherwise disadvantaged families. Six of the district’s 10 elementary schools have school-wide Title 1 programs.

Schools decide individually how to allocate Title 1 funds. Over the school year, funds are often utilized to build in instructional support. Over the summer, these funds are used for programs that will help students hit the ground running in the new school year.

“As a guiding principle, we try to reach students who are struggling in the three-month gap,” said Todd Robson, the district’s director of curriculum and instruction.

Tualatin Elementary School's summer school program kicked off this week. James Templeton Elementary School’s program will begin on July 12. Bridgeport Elementary, Charles F. Tigard Elementary and Metzger Elementary School all have programs beginning later this summer.

At Templeton Elementary, a four-week summer camp will help incoming first- and third-graders work on achieving learning benchmarks.

“The focus is really on literacy this year,” said Robson, who was principal at Templeton for nine years. This includes reading practice, vocabulary practice, reading comprehension, phonics and fluency, he said.

At the same time, summer readiness programs will help incoming kindergarteners learn how to be students.

“Schools are using summer programs to capture as many incoming (kindergarteners) as possible and give them some very specific types of school readiness practices,” said Robson. “Things like practicing riding a school bus, learning routines ... and connecting families with the school.”

Summer school programs, as well as other district facilities, will offer a free lunch program for children under 18 throughout the summer. No application or registration is required to participate.

Visit ttsdschools.org/pages/ttsd/District/Food_Services_Nutrition for details.