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I want to encourage you, as parents, by letting you know that all the support you give your students and their educators at Pettigrew is much appreciated and so vital to the progress that your children make in their educational careers. We feel so fortunate to play a part of this life long journey of learning. The support and encouragement that your children feel from you during the school year is something that is easy to let slide during the fun and busy summer months. However, the fact that a summer slide in academic performance is a real thing is historically accurate and has been proven by research. The fact that this academic slip can have implications into next school year and beyond is also backed up by data. With Sioux Falls Schools conducting both end of year and beginning of year assessments, now, parents and the school will actually be able to see the impact that summer may have had on a particular student’s performance in the classroom.
The good news is that research also shows that this summer slide is very easy to prevent from a parent’s perspective. Programs like the summer reading programs at the public library, Pettigrew Library’s summer reading initiative, and other activities as simple as dedicating time each day to having students read and write, (reading with a parent or older sibling, writing out required information such as shopping lists, trip itineraries, diary notes, etc) are all excellent strategies parents can employ to make summer months have a positive impact on student achievement. If a parent feels that there is additional academic assistance that is needed, there are many different avenues they can look at as well. There is the Summer Bridge program at the public libraries, several for-pay tutoring services available in Sioux Falls, and contacting a tutor on the Sioux Falls School District’s list of tutors are just several ideas. Any of those programs can be very beneficial to students and can allow the freedom of scheduling in summertime to be used for academic profit. Contact your classroom teacher if you need assistance in pursuing any of those options this summer.