How NJ Needs to Combat Learning Loss
The concept of student regression during the summer months isn’t new, but since New Jersey 101.5 last specifically looked at the issue in 2019, a devastating pandemic has turned the concept of learning loss upside down.
That doesn’t even take into account the children’s mental health issues during that time, or any behavioral issues or disorientation they may have experienced returning to school full-time last fall.
And although New Jersey has worked quickly to bridge the digital divide in the era of remote learning, Aaron Dworkin, CEO of National Summer Learning Associationsaid inequalities remain and that COVID-19 is only exacerbating them.
“It should have been, ‘Does every child in your family have access to a computer at home?’ Because maybe there was a computer in the house, but the mom needed it for work, or the dad,” Dworkin said.
Who remains at risk?
Low-income communities and communities of color are still collectively disadvantaged, Dworkin said, as all of the educational concerns expressed at the start of the pandemic have sadly come to fruition.
Plus, what was true at the start of the pandemic is true now: if parents are working from home, it can be difficult for them to give their children the attention they need to stay busy and productive.
That’s why Dworkin’s group espouses a ‘connection before content’ philosophy, recognizing that children have academic and social routines, and all of which have been dropped at one point or another over the past couple of years. .
Educators and parents need to be aware of these factors, Dworkin said.
“We ideally recommend that schools and families tune in before the end of the school year – now it’s over – to find out what children are doing that they are passionate about, that we could continue to promote, or what they struggled with which one we could work with?” he said.
Math skills erode faster than reading
But content matters too, and Dworkin said both during remote learning and during summer break, one core area suffers more than another.
“The math, actually, people did even worse, because reading is something that families are generally comfortable doing at home,” he said. “No one does math problems before bed, but a lot of people read to their kids before bed.”
There are programs that will help kids who might be falling behind in math, Dworkin said, and he recommended going to decouverteete.org to pave the way for some 30,000 educational programs across the country this season.
“We care about summer because we see it as both the most unequal time in education, but also the most entrepreneurial time in education,” he said. “That’s the real reason I’m working on it, because you have all these creative ideas and leaders trying these things.”
The National Summer Learning Association is working with the New Jersey Department of Education on a state-specific strategy, and New Jersey 101.5 has contacted the DOE for more information.
Patrick Lavery is a reporter and anchor for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at [email protected]
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15 Sensational Places to Visit in Seaside Heights and Seaside Park
From the rides to all the boardwalk food to the many water fun, Seaside Heights and nearby Seaside Park has remained a family friendly place for all ages.
Along the way, the Seaside Heights boardwalk and Casino Pier were hit by tragic disasters, such as a fire, Super Hurricane Sandy, and another fire. Both have proven their resilience through reconstruction and expansion.
Cape May, NJ: 15 Wonderful Places to Visit
These are the best hiking spots in New Jersey
A trip to New Jersey doesn’t have to be just the beach. Our state has incredible trails, waterfalls and lakes to enjoy.
From the Pine Barrens to the Appalachian Trail to New Jersey’s hidden gems, you have plenty of options for a great hike. Hiking is a great way to spend time outdoors and enjoy nature, plus it’s a great workout.
If you descend and meet an uphill hiker, pull to the side and give the uphill hiker some space. An uphill hiker has the right of way unless they stop to catch their breath.
Always stay on the trail, you may see side paths, unless marked as an official trail, avoid them. Going off the trail, you risk damaging the ecosystems around the trail, the plants and wildlife that live there.
You also don’t want to disturb any wildlife you encounter, just keep your distance from the wildlife and continue hiking.
Cyclists must yield to hikers and horses. Hikers should also give in to horses, but I don’t know how many horses you’ll encounter on New Jersey trails.
If you plan to take your dog on your hike, they must be on a leash and be sure to clean up all pet waste.
Finally, pay attention to the weather, if the trail is too muddy, it’s probably best to save your hike for another day.
I asked our listeners for their suggestions on the best hiking spots in New Jersey, check out their suggestions: