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National Summer School Initiative
Summer 2022 Results
| A NOTE FROM OUR HEAD OF PROGRAM
A recordbreaking summer. O CTOBER 202 2
At NSSI, we partnered last summer with 42 schools and districts, including New York City; Ector County, Texas; and Fulton County, Georgia to offer students an exceptionally engaging, culturally affirming academic experience in a warm and joyful environment. Together, we boosted their academic confidence and prepared them for success in the next grade. But perhaps most importantly, we equipped and inspired participating teachers to teach at a whole new level, tapping discourse-based instruction and expecting far more of their students.
We know that summer offers a unique opportunity to achieve what can’t be done during the regular school year and what must be accomplished post-pandemic. How then do we make summer school the most fruitful five weeks possible? This question animates the team at NSSI. We start by finding the country’s best teachers, educators with a track record of driving exceptional student achievement AND leading electric classrooms where all cylinders are firing and the excitement is palpable.
| A NOTE FROM OUR CEO All of us in education are facing the challenge of a lifetime. Our students are dramatically behind. Just this fall, we learned that ACT scores are the lowest in 30 years, and the National Assessment of Educational Proficiency (NAEP) showed jaw-dropping declines over the course of the pandemic in both reading and math across most states and all demographic groups. And it’s not just in academics where children need our intensive support. Socially and emotionally, they are struggling as never before.
O CTOBER 202 2
NSSI improved more than 15 percentage points (from pre-test to post-test over five weeks), and literature students improved 10 percentage points.
One sixth-grade teacher wrote to say: The NSSI curriculum was extremely engaging, thorough and detailed, with support and ready-to-use materials. It provided a clear outline, worksheets, resources, modeling, and support for the entire lesson. The support was superb, and I have never felt so motivated and helped! The videos are an excellent tool and I loved watching them! I loved this program! Keep up the excellent work! Feedback like this is the wind in our sails! Summer 2023 provides an extraordinary opportunity to help young people in this critical time of unprecedented need. Could we explore partnering with your school or district to accelerate learning and build teacher capacity to meet the moment? — ST E V E N F. W I LSO N C O FO U N D E R A N D C EO
These mentor teachers are instrumental in building and continually refining a curriculum that is rigorous, discourse-rich, culturally responsive, and deeply engaging. For example, all of our carefully curated novels are by authors of color with protagonists of color, and they all are supplemented with exceptional poems, short stories, and essays on related topics. Our math program strategically focuses on the “power standards” necessary for success in the next grade. The program takes students beyond simply getting the right answer to a deep conceptual understanding of how they got there and what they can apply to the next problem. Over the course of the summer school program, our mentor teachers then work directly with partner teachers nationwide to support successful implementation of this meticulously developed curriculum. Through dynamic pre-service training and twiceweekly sessions thereafter, we focus on instructional practices proven to accelerate learning, giving teachers the coaching and the practice needed to take their craft to the next level. This combination of exceptional curriculum and professional development led to significant student achievement gains in Summer 2022. On the power standards we focused on this summer, math students at
We are proud of these successes but not content to stop there. In response to the bleak recent results on the nation’s report card, U.S. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said: “We must treat the task of catching our children up with the urgency this moment demands. If this doesn’t have you fired up to raise the bar in education, you’re in the wrong profession.” For Summer 2023, we will offer the following program enhancements: •
A full K-12 offering, including math and literature in rising 1st through rising 9th and four exceptional high school classes: Global Studies, American Studies, Geometry, and Algebra.
A separate Texas-specific curriculum for rising 1st through rising 9th fully aligned to the TEKS standards.
A scaffolded student workbook for almost all grade and subject levels that supports the needs of multi-lingual learners, students with IEPs, and students who are reading below grade level. These materials allow teachers to provide extra supports without lowering the fundamental rigor of the tasks.
We cannot wait for summer 2023, and we hope you join us! — DOUG MCCURRY C O FO U N D E R A N D H E A D O F P R O G R A M
By the numbers With new partnerships, expanded programming, and record high student enrollment, NSSI’s third season has been one for the books!
teachers and leaders
42 21 partners
| TRANSFORMATIVE TEACHER TRAINING
Designed to equip and inspire.
NSSI’s rigorous yet supportive professional development program consists of a four-day virtual pre-institute, followed by ongoing twice weekly PD sessions. NSSI also provides a two-day preinstitue specifically tailored to administrators and coaches, as well as ongoing leader development. This summer, teachers and administrators from our partner schools came together to learn from each other, sharpen their skills, and practice new strategies to support their students.
At the National Summer School Initiative, partner teachers and leaders from around the country hone their craft guided by expert mentors—watching their mentors’ moves and making them their own.
Of the 2,700 teachers and leaders who participated in one of NSSI’s three teacher training institues, 90% or more agreed with the following statements: •
The session presenter was engaging and knowledgeable.
The session objectives were clear.
I believe we met the session objectives.
Partner teachers were overwhelmingly satisfied with the quality of NSSI’s program materials. Nearly 75% of teachers agreed or strongly agreed with the statements “The curriculum and lesson materials provided by NSSI are strong” and “The daily lesson videos and lesson flow documents provided by the mentor teacher are strong.” “I AM HAPPY TO BE TEACHING SUMMER SCHOOL THROUGH NSSI”
85% of school leaders agreed or strongly agreed that they were happy to be coaching summer school through NSSI.
I love how the NSSI curriculum puts students in the driver’s seat of their learning. There is little room for disengagement and the rigor is high. From my perspective, the most beneficial part of this program is the 2x per week PD. My teachers have built great relationships with their mentor teachers and I have seen positive changes in the way they teach from the intensive coaching and training. — ADM I N /COACH GEM PR EP
The NSSI curriculum was extremely engaging, thorough and detailed with support and ready-to-use materials. It provided a clear outline, worksheets, resources, modeling and support for the entire lesson. The support was superb and I have never felt so MOTIVATED and helped! The videos are an excellent tool, and I loved watching them! I loved this program! — G 6 PAR T N ER T E ACH ER DE T ROI T ACA DEM Y OF A R T S A N D SCI ENCES
Meet NSSI’s Summer 2022 Mentor teachers.
Carrie began her career teaching second and third grades for Teach for America in the South Bronx. Her students made on average 1.7 grades of growth in reading per year and 84 percent were found proficient in math. Carrie was a founding second grade teacher and leadership resident at Success Academy’s flagship school, before becoming founding principal of Success Academy Upper West. Her school received the Blackboard Award for Rising Star Grade Schools and was ranked #1 in math and #8 in ELA, based on student performance on the New York State assessments. Carrie was a cognitively guided instruction (CGI) math consultant for various schools in Minnesota and most recently worked as a dean of instruction at Hiawatha Academies. Carrie earned a B.A. from Harvard University in psychology and an M.S. from Pace University.
Christina Gellos Christina began her career teaching seventh grade math as a Teach for America corps member at Achievement First East New York Middle School in Brooklyn. Over three years, she increased student proficiency on the New York Common Core mathematics exam by 43 percentage points. Christina then joined the school’s leadership team as academic dean for math, coaching and developing teachers and managing the math department. The following year, her school achieved 92 percent proficiency across all grades on the New York Common Core math exam. Christina earned a B.A. in public policy, with a minor in education and political science, from Duke University and an M.A. from Relay Graduate School of Education. She is pursuing an Ed.M. in education leadership from Harvard’s Graduate School of Education.
Ayanna Grey Ayanna began her career with Teach for America in Baltimore, where she taught the fifth grade. Since then, Ayanna has served as dean of students, literacy coach, co-school leader, and principal with several charter school management organizations, including KIPP and Achievement First. Most recently, she joined the Achievement School District in Tennessee, a newly established district charged with reforming and boosting student achievement in the lowest-performing schools in the state. As the Achievement School District’s literacy coach and the principal of Georgian Hills Achievement Elementary School, Ayanna coached a team of educators responsible for moving the school from the bottom five percent of elementary schools in the state. Ayanna earned her B.A. in American Studies at Occidental College and an M.A.T. from Johns Hopkins University.
| ACADEMIC GAINS
NSSI comes to Texas. NSSI’s entry into Texas has received rave reviews! This past spring, the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation committed to sponsoring students in Texas schools partnering with NSSI in summer 2022 and 2023. In summer 2022, NSSI served more than 3,000 Texas students and established partnerships across districts in Texas, including Ector County Independent School District, Texas College Preparatory Academies/Ignite Community Schools, and Compass Rose Public Schools.
NSSI’s assessments tested students on TEKS power standards that equip students for success in the next grade. On a 100-point scale, overall student proficiency went up 19 percentage points in math and 16 percentage points in literature over the five-week summer program. All grade levels showed improvement in both subjects, with average gains ranging from 3 points to 42 points, depending on the grade and subject. In literature, students made gains in 24 of 26 targeted literature standards. In math, students made gains in 39 of 41 targeted math standards.
NSSI’s programming was met with positive responses from parents, students, and teachers alike. Survey findings showed:
Students’ academic confidence grew.
Students felt supported.
85% of parents agreed or strongly agreed that their child gained more confidence in his or her academic abilities as a result of summer school.
80% of students agreed or strongly agreed that teacher feedback improved their quality of work.
My daughter actually looks forward to school now and loves her teachers. — G 3 PAREN T ECTOR CO U N T Y ISD
Book lovers were born. Parents loved the NSSI program.
70% of students agreed or strongly agreed that the program’s novels made them want to read everyday.
77% of families said they were very likely or extremely likely to recommend other students attend a summer school that uses NSSI’s programming—with 62% selecting the highest possible response, a “10.”
The best part about summer school is that they make school work fun. — G 5 ST U DEN T ECTOR CO U N T Y ISD
The discipline, rigor, and academic depth of the NSSI Program has helped strenghten my teaching style. — G 2 PAR T NER T E ACH ER ECTOR CO U N T Y ISD
| MATH GAINS
In K-2 Math, students’ proficiency scores increased an average of 36.5 percentage points over the course of the program.
In summer 2022, NSSI expanded to K-2—with high-impact programming in both math and literature.
In 10 standards, students gained more than 20 points. In some standards, students gained nearly 30 points—in just five weeks.
Something that I wish was true in all of my math classes all year long is, in math class this summer, we shared how we got our answers and what strategies we used a lot. This helped me see how others solve the same equation, and how they were able to find the answer more quickly. — G 6 ST U DEN T DEK ALB CO U N T Y ISD
| LITERATURE GAINS
In K-2 literature, students made gains in 8 of 9 targeted literature standards, with student performance improving by more than 10 percentage points in 4 of 8 standards.
| K-2 LITERATURE PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT BY DR . CHERYL KELLE Y- HENDERSON A SSO CI AT E DI R ECTOR OF EL A
In designing the K-2 literature curriculum, we began with two driving questions: 1.
How can we embed practice in foundational literacy skills within each lesson to support development at a variety of proficiency levels? 2. What are the essential comprehension skills needed to ensure access for all learners to our connected texts and writing tasks?
Each literature lesson launches with a fluency warm-up in the five foundation skills of word recognition and language comprehension. The routines are built to support access to the unit’s text. Word Recognition Language comprehension • Phonemic awareness • Sentence reading practice • Decoding • Sentence correction • High-frequency and sight word work In sentence work, students practice 1) unscrambling sentences, 2) distinguishing between fragmented and completed sentences, and 3) correcting sentences. These routines: 1. Offer practice with grammar and conventions, drawn from the text. 2. Familiarize readers with the types of sentences within the text that they will read. 3. Enhance reading comprehension skills that are transferable to other texts and to writing.
The NSSI curriculum targeted quick and purposeful reading targets such as Main Idea, Character Analysis, Making Connections, etc. The math was simple and straight to the point... easily digestible for student and teacher. The discipline, rigor, and academic depth of the NSSI Program has helped strenghten my teaching style.
DANNA , G 2 ST U DEN T | I N I T I A L W R I T I NG S A M PLE
DANNA , G 2 ST U DEN T | FI N AL W R I T I NG S AM PLE
— G 2 PAR T NER T E ACHER ECTOR CO U N T Y ISD
New York City partners with NSSI. The largest school system in the country partnered with NSSI for accelerated summer learning. Originally conceived as a 1,000-student pilot, the partnership ballooned to serve nearly 7,000 students in 29 schools.
| ACADEMIC GAINS
On a 100-point scale, student proficiency went up 30 percentage points in math and 25 percentage points in literature. Sixth and eigth grade math students increased in proficiency by 37 and 49 percentage points, respectively. Eighth grade literature students increased in proficiency by 40 percentage points. In literature, students made gains in 24 of 25 targeted literature standards. In math, students made gains in 64 of 65 targeted math standards.
79% 79% of NYC students agreed or strongly agreed that teacher feedback improved the quality of their work.
74% 74% of NYC students agreed or strongly agreed that the quality of teaching in summer school was strong.
100% 100% of participating NYC school leaders agreed or strongly agreed that the curriculum and program materials provided by NSSI are strong.
My favorite part of the program was the unique approach to making sure the lessons are studentled and engaging through essential steps such as discourse, clarifying word problems, and seeking first to understand student thinking process before attempting to model what we as instructors think the student should know. — PAR T NER T E ACHER NYCD OE
| MATH GAINS
In 3-8 math, students’ proficiency scores increased an average of 16 points. Students made gains in 33 of 34 targeted math standards. On some standards, student scores improved by more than 15 points. Fourth-grade students increased in proficiency by more than 20 points across all targeted standards, with student performance increasing by nearly 30 points on some standards.
This program needs to be shown to the world. The group of kind hearted souls that are looking out for the mental aptitude of our kids need to be rewarded and recognized. My daughter wanted to go to summer school. Take a second and think about that. She needed some extra help with her math confidence and writing skills, but she wanted to go, asked me to sign her up even before I got the email for summer school sign ups. Her reasoning is the teachers, not ‘friends,’ not ‘bored at home.’ The teachers. Words don’t even begin to convey my gratitude to IACS and the NSSI program. Thank you all so much for being the amazing people you are to take my daughter and build her up in the amazing way you all do. Thank you. — G 5 PAREN T I DAHO AR T S CHAR T ER SCHO OL
My favorite thing about NSSI is that everything was so clear and understandable. It helped me partcipate. — G 8 ST U DEN T FOR T E PREP ACADEMY
| RETURNING PARTNER SPOTLIGHT A NOT E FROM DR . J E ANNE W ILL ARD E VER E T T P U BLIC SCHO OLS
DR. JEANNE WILLARD, ED.D. EVERETT PUBLIC SCHOOLS
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF COLLEGE & CAREER READINESS AND EXTENDED LEARNING OPTIONS
| LITERATURE GAINS
In 3-8 literature, students’ proficiency scores increased an average of 17 points over the course of the program. 3-8 students made gains in all 18 targeted literature standards. Student scores on 12 of 18 standards improved by more than 10 points.
What I like about summer school the most is that it gives you a second chance. When you didn’t do so great throughout the year, summer school provides a chance to show what you can really do when it comes to reading and math. — G7 ST U DEN T FOR T E PREP ACADEMY
Students, families, and teachers continue to share with us their enthusiasm for the lessons, materials, and for the emphasis on social-emotional learning. We partner with NSSI because they are “student first.”
Everett Public Schools has proudly partnered with the National Summer School Initiative (NSSI) for the last two summers. NSSI provides rigorous, grade level summer curriculum in English Language Arts and mathematics, accessible to students at all levels. Novels are high-interest and math problems are engaging and relevant. Foundational skills are reinforced while students are engaged in critical thinking and creative tasks. Teachers are provided intensive professional development and support before and during summer programming to be able to meet the needs of diverse students. Resources are available online and are easy to navigate. One of the key factors in deciding to partner another year with NSSI was the demonstrable impact of the program, with students making gains of 15–40% in priority grade level standards assessed through pre- and postassessments. Moreover, students, families, and teachers continue to share with us their enthusiasm for the lessons, materials, and for the emphasis on social-emotional learning. We partner with NSSI because they are “student first.”
HIGH SCHOOL GAINS
High school gains
NSSI’s high school humanities summer programming sets students up for success in rigorous advanced and AP-level courses in the fall. Each week, students explore a different turning point in American or global history, and engage literature from and about that time, as well as primary and secondary source materials.
This summer NSSI introduced four new courses to set up students for success in humanities and math classes in high school and beyond.
Students explore the essential questions of “What is power?” and “Who deserves power?” They also dive into “How does literature reveal perspectives on power within their societies?” Students study the Zhou Dynasty, the Achaemenid Empire, the Romanov Dynasty, and the South African National Party during apartheid.
Students explore the essential questions of “How does a nation shift its thinking—and its core values?” and “How do art and literature reflect those changing values? What do poems and stories tell us about how a nation is thinking?” Students study four different periods throughout America’s history: the founding of our nation, the rise of industrial capitalism, modernism, and the 1960s.
Students are engaged.
The course is really good for conversation and welcoming new ideas. The stuff we learn is very interesting, actually, because it’s about the past, which shapes the present and future. I would recommend this class. It will help with things students are learning in their history classes during the school year. Everything is connected, so I think it’s beneficial to gain background knowledge. — GLOBAL ST U DIES ST U DEN T
I’m enjoying talking about what we are reading and how everyone has different beliefs. I enjoy this curriculum because it’s different—some people don’t talk about these things, and it’s actually really fun to talk about what you are reading. I would recommend this to other students because it helps people see the bigger picture and makes you realize that some people’s ideas can be different from yours. — GLOBAL ST U DI ES ST U DEN T
| MATH GAINS
In algebra and geometry, students made gains in 9 targeted math standards, with student scores improving by more than 30 percentage points on 5 of 11 standards.
| HIGH SCHOOL MATH PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT BY KERI H U BBARD DI RECTOR OF MAT H
In designing the NSSI algebra curriculum, we began with two driving questions: 1.
What are the concepts that, particularly since the start of the pandemic, most often hold students back from success in algebra? 2. What concepts are central to year-long algebra courses where we can give students a leg up? Here’s what made our list of items that got in the way of students’ success in algebra: • • • •
Lack of number sense (i.e. adding, subtracting, multiplying, dividing positive and negative whole numbers, fractions, and decimal numbers) Lack of fluency with solving equations (i.e. isolating a variable to solve for x or y) Inability to translate between graphs to equations, from tables to situations Inability to solve novel problems
We address the first three deficits in our math foundations course and the last in problemsolving. To strengthen students’ navigating graphs, equations, tables, and situations, we also spend about 70% of our time on this topic in problem-solving. We work in depth with linear functions and their graphs, and then quadratic functions. We give students a leg up in year-long algebra courses by addressing two key concepts: • •
Quadratics/factoring Function transformations
Both of these topics are enormous in scope and, too often, taught in a procedural way: “Here’s a trick to help you factor quickly; here’s a method for completing the square; here’s the quadratic formula.” To help students to get the most out of their year-long class, we dive deeply the concepts behind each, in both our math foundations and problem-solving summer courses.
I wish that all of my math classes had such great teachers. I really liked my teacher for this summer school class. The teacher went over multiple methods that were helpful and also checked with students to make sure that they understood what was going on.
I like how interactive the math program is and how much more one-onone attention and feedback I receive.
— G9 MAT H ST U DEN T
— G9 MAT H ST U DEN T
GEM PR EP
National Summer School Initiative 147 Prince Street, 3-54 Brooklyn, NY 11201 www.nssi.org 646 247 6160 email@example.com