SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – While most children take a break from school this summer, some are taking advantage of their vacation time to improve literacy skills. This morning, children and their families met their teachers for breakfast at Boland elementary to kick off the Talk/Read/Succeed! Hasbro Summer Learning Initiative summer learning program.
The program pairs housing authority families from two developments in Springfield with neighboring elementary schools. The five-week summer program aims to boost and retain children’s literacy skills for children in communities who may fall behind more affluent peers. Families from the John L. Sullivan and Robinson Gardens developments are uniting this summer with Edward P. Boland and Hiram L. Dorman elementary schools.
One parent told 22News that keeping her daughter in the program has other benefits beyond education.
“It’ll keep them off the streets where a lot of things go on,” said Natasha Hernandez. “We hear a lot of shootings go on, so I figured it’s a safe place for them to spend the summer.”
This is the program’s 4th year, and so far, 76 children have registered at Boland, and more than 30 children at Dorman elementary. The program’s goal is ensure children are on level by the end of grade three.