Press Release

Without any educational enrichment the average student loses up to three months of learning during summer; loss in 2020 expected to be significantly greater due to COVID-19 school closures

REDWOOD CITY, CA, July 1, 2020 – Education experts predict this year’s summer slide – when the average student loses as much as three months of academic skills from no educational enrichment during the summer months – will be exponentially greater this year due to school closures resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Raising A Reader, a national nonprofit organization that provides resources and guidance for families to implement home-based literacy routines, is making available children’s summer learning kits to help school districts and parents reduce the extensive summer slide expected this year.

The learning kits, which are available in both English and Spanish, are for children ages 4-6 and aligned with kindergarten and first grade readiness standards and designed to reinforce academic skills children have learned the previous school year. The kits include five weeks of daily activities, books and learning tools that support school readiness, language and literacy development, STEAM activities and social-emotional learning.

“Under normal circumstances, it is important for parents to maintain a home-based learning routine for children during the summer months in order to ensure their readiness in the fall,” said Michelle Torgerson, president and CEO of Raising A Reader. “This year, because so many children will have been out of school for the better part of five months due to the COVID-19 school closures, it is absolutely critical parents establish some sort of regular learning regimen during the summer to avoid their children taking a giant step back.”

The Raising A Reader summer learning kit is available to parents for $40 plus shipping and can be purchased in bulk by school districts and other organizations. More information and ordering instructions are at

Each kit contains a bilingual family guide; more than 30 daily school readiness activities; number cards to help children recognize numbers, count or play games; alphabet cards to encourage letter and sound recognition, spelling and vocabulary development; sight words to teach children words that appear most frequently in reading and writing; a tech guide with carefully selected free online resources; templates for home-based learning tools; four high-quality children’s books; crayons; a journal for completing activities in the family guide; letters and numbers to explore words, counting and math concepts; counting cubes to count, show numbers, make patterns, identify colors and build; and a drawstring backpack to hold all the materials.

The Raising A Reader program is evidence-based, with 39 independent evaluations showing that Raising A Reader significantly improves language and literacy skills, cognitive development, communication and comprehension skills, school readiness and social competence. The program is implemented through a network of community partners that comprise more than 3,000 locations across the country including public school systems, libraries, afterschool programs, community agencies, and other organizations both public and private. More than 15 million books are currently in rotation to children across the country.

Raising A Reader strives to close the opportunity gap for under resourced children and their families, specifically in communities in color across the country. The organization operates under the belief that education and literacy are a cornerstone in creating equality and opportunity. Raising A Reader stands firm in its unwavering commitment to equality, diversity, inclusivity and improving the lives of children in all communities across the United States.

Raising A Reader is a 501c3 charitable organization dedicated to helping families develop, practice, and maintain literacy habits for children ages 0-8 that are critical for a child’s success in school and in life. Headquartered in Redwood City, California, Raising A Reader was founded in 1999 and has served more than 1.7 million children nationwide. More information is available at Follow on Twitter @RARnational, Facebook at RaisingAReaderNational and Instagram at raising_a_reader.

Steve Honig
The Honig Company, LLC


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