Alabama Summer Reading Progam

Sydney Steidl

Alabama policymakers, in a state traditionally known for poor education outcomes, are actively working to increase literacy skills—especially in early education.

With Alabama typically falling behind other states in literacy, the pandemic only made matters worse. Research shows students at all grade levels lost ground. For example, in 2021 only about 18% of kindergartners had reached the physical, social-emotional, and literacy standards for their grade, and only two out of every three were assessed as prepared to begin schooling.

The state is currently focused on implementing the Alabama Literacy Act, which was passed in 2019. The goal is to bolster literacy and basic reading skills. The law requires school districts to provide programs and other strategies to raise struggling students to higher levels of literacy. 

One key element in the Literacy Act requires school districts to deliver a major boost for students during the summer. The requirement means Alabama school districts will provide summer literacy programs for students who need it. 

Alabama now offers summer camps focused on literacy. These camps offer students who are falling behind about 70 hours of extra instruction time, preparing them for the following school year and beyond through improving their foundational literacy skills.

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