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Baltimore City Public Schools students who participated in summer academic program from Young Audiences avoided summer learning loss

3/2/2017, 6 a.m.
Low-income Baltimore City Public Schools students who participated in a new arts-related summer academic program from Young Audiences avoided summer ...

— • For math, statistically significant results showed that students in grades 3-5 who regularly attended (defined as attending at least 75% of the program) the YA Academy improved 1.8% percentile points in national student rankings on i-Ready standardized testing from the spring of 2016 to the fall of that year. That compares to a decrease of 2.8% percentile points for city schools students who did not attend any summer programming.

• In reading, YA Academy students in grades 3-5 with regular attendance fell only .8% percentile points while students who did not attend any summer programming fell 2.1 percentile points upon returning to school in the fall.

• Results for all grade 3-5 students regardless of attendance rate showed Young Audiences attendees falling just .3% percentile points in math and .7% in reading. These were significantly smaller losses than students with no summer programming (down 2.8% in math, down 2.1% lost in reading).

• In literacy, only 3% of the students in grades K-2 attending the YA Academy did not meet their benchmark goal (the empirically derived target score that represents adequate reading progess1) on the standardized DIBELS assessment in the fall after returning to school compared to 8.1% of students not attending any summer programming not meeting the benchmark.

Young Audiences external program evaluation participants found:

· 79% of students who attended at least 75% of the program and who took pre- and post-tests had a positive change from the first to the last week of the program on a curriculum-based measure of mathematics.

· Approximately 60% of students who attended at least 75% of the program and who took pre- and post-test writing prompts showed positive change in their structure and content of their writing.

· 71% of students who attended 75% of the program and were administered pre- and post-assessments showed growth in at least one out of three social-emotional competency areas over the course of the program. The social-emotional competencies studied were relationship skills, self-awareness, and goal directed behavior.

“The arts offer an extraordinary opportunity, particularly during the summer, to reignite the joy of learning and to set young people on the right course to start the school year strong. These impressive results from Young Audiences mirror findings of the landmark Wallace Foundation study showing that elementary school students with high levels of attendance in high-quality, voluntary summer learning programs can experience benefits in math and reading,” commented Matthew Boulay PhD, National Sumer Learning Association founder and interim CEO.

Eric Harrell, father of 9 year-old Summer Arts Academy participant, Aria Harrell, said "Before this academy, I could tell that my daughter was struggling in math. By using the arts she was able to learn math in a different way-a way that worked for her. She has so much more confidence in her math class."

1 “Dibels Next Benchmark Goals and Composite Score, “ Dynamic Measurement Group, Inc. (December1, 2010). https://dibels.uoregon.edu/docs/DIBELSNextFormerBenchmarkGoals.pdf

Links to complete City Schools and Young Audiences Evaluations:

YAMD evaluation:

http://www.yamd.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Young-Audiences-Final-2016-Program-Goal-Evaluation-Report.pdf

City Schools evaluation:

http://www.yamd.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/City-Schools-2016-Summer-Learning-Evaluation-1.pdf

About Young Audiences/Arts for Learning Young Audiences is the nation’s largest arts-in-education provider and started in Baltimore in 1950. As a Young Audiences affiliate, Young Audiences/Arts for Learning (YA) is a nonprofit organization devoted to enriching the lives and education of Maryland’s youth through educational and culturally diverse arts programs for more than 65 years. Each year, YA reaches more than 190,000 students through over 7,000 arts learning experiences by partnering professional artists from all disciplines with schools throughout Maryland for hands-on arts learning experiences. We envision a Maryland where the arts are valued for their capacity to transform lives, and where every student is immersed in opportunities to imagine, to create, and to realize their full potential through the arts. For more information, contact YA at 410-837-7577 or visit yamd.org.