LAKE ELSINORE—The Lake Elsinore Unified School District is one of 51 recipients of the state’s leading educational honor, the Golden Bell Award. Now in its 39th year, this award is sponsored by the California School Boards Association to recognize outstanding public school programs for innovation, sustainability and best practices that facilitate positive student outcomes. LEUSD’s Summer Literacy Camp garnered a Golden Bell award in the category of closing the achievement gap.
Summer Literacy Camp serves nearly 800 elementary school children who are six months to one year behind in reading when entering grades 1, 2 and 3. Each spring, invitations are sent to select parents about their child's participation. The primary goal of Summer Literacy Camp is to prevent the “summer slide,” or summer learning loss. After three years, the program has gone beyond stemming the summer slide: data shows participating students are reading at grade level as a result of the program.
“Summer Literacy Camp builds successful readers and more confident students in their grade level transition,” said Board President Stan Crippen. “Parents have also told us their children are more enthusiastic about learning as a result of their summer reading experience.”
Theming differentiates regular school lessons from Summer Literacy Camp, an important factor in holding kids’ interest and rewarding progress. The program integrates art, STEM, and Language Arts as students set off to explore a different world during their six-week interactive reading adventure. This summer students are diving into deserts—last year students explored many wonders under the sea. To encourage steady attendance, students earn one book per week—for a total of six books—to start their own home library.
“Award recipients exemplify the spirit of innovation and excellence for which all of California’s public schools strive,” said CSBA CEO & Executive Director Vernon M. Billy. “The Golden Bell Awards reflect the depth and breadth of outstanding education offerings in our state, and demonstrate the tenacity, vision and dedication of school leaders across California.”
To learn more about the Golden Bell awards, visit the California School Boards Association’s Golden Bell website at https://gb.csba.org/. LEUSD will receive its award during the Golden Bell recognition reception and ceremony on Thursday, November 29, a highlight of CSBA’s Annual Education Conference and Trade Show in San Francisco, California.