What’s Right With Our Schools: Summer Reach Program at Dalewood Middle
CHATANOOGA, TN (WDEF) – Countless classroom hours were lost during the pandemic. Hamilton County’s Summer Reach program is designed to get kids back up to speed and even give them a head start for next year.
Tasha Flowers is a Literacy Coach at Dalewood Middle.
She explains, “The Summer Reach Program is a part of an initiative through Hamilton County to make up for lost hours of learning that students may have encountered as a result of Covid. It was a voluntary sign up for most kids. Some kids were required to attend and it’s open to any child that attends Dalewood Middle School.
Zemeri Townsend is an 8th grader at Dalewood.
She says, “It’s happened, because you can like get more knowledge during the Summer while so you don’t forget what you have learned, and plus, like you can always learn more. It’s never a time where you don’t need to learn.”
Dayonna Morris hopes to be a rising 8th grader at CSAS.
She says, “This Reach Program has benefited me because, without it, I wouldn’t be able to go to the eighth grade; which is my goal. I’d like to go to be able to go to the next grade. And it’s been fun. This whole Reach program has been very interesting.”
Sierra Cook teaches 7th grade Science at Dalewood.
She says, “I think the Reach Program gives the children opportunity to get social interaction in the Summertime, which a lot of them don’t get at home. Another thing that it gives, it gives some consistency. Not just for the students, but I can say for myself too, that I appreciate coming in and interacting with the children on a regular basis.”
Tasha Flowers concludes, “We have two sessions of each. One is in June and one is in July. The second session is focused on preparing them for their upcoming grade level. So, when the fifth graders, they will be working on sixth grade assignments. The eighth graders will actually go to their zoned high school and complete work that will prepare them for the ninth grade. We have the core classes which are Math, ELA, and Science, and we also include the two related art courses which includes PE and Music. For those who chose to do at home learning during the school year, this gives them a chance to socialize with their peers, and see faces that they haven’t seen in a couple of months, and I just hope that this is an opportunity for kids to gain as much information as they can.”