Following a year of tremendous changes, the school district and nonprofits across our region are rallying for student success on a truly collaborative scale. The timing and urgency couldn’t be more pronounced. We’re seeing longstanding efforts and new partners take significant leadership in helping fill gaps – be it gaps in achievement or children’s needs – and ensure hard-earned gains are sustained into the summer months and beyond.
The Community Foundation of Sarasota County has a longstanding commitment to ensure that this wrap-around support engages our youngest learners and families through a two-generation (2Gen) lens. For nearly a decade, thanks to the trust of donors we work with, we have invested in programs that prepare new students to enter the classroom and mitigate learning loss for returning ones, which includes our work with Summer Learning Academies and Campaign for Grade-Level Reading. In the face of a global pandemic, however, the student learning environment has drastically changed and along with it, new possibilities have emerged.
Earlier this spring, we brought together 17 local leaders representing cause-driven nonprofits, the Sarasota County School District, libraries, and other philanthropic foundations with the goal of crafting collaborative strategies for summer learning. What transpired was brainstorming and problem solving at its finest.