EverFi, Inc., the leading critical skills education company, announced today at the TED2014 Conference a major new initiative to use innovative technology to help counter the massive challenge of summer learning loss. EverFi’s new digital learning experience, Verano – Summer LearningTM, will actively drive consistent educational engagement for K-12 students in key foundational skills during the summer months.
For many students, summer represents a period with little or no educational engagement. As a result, most students experience no increase in knowledge and skill development, and many see a decrease in academic abilities. Students from lower-income communities are especially at risk and realize greater loss of knowledge. In fact, two-thirds of the 9th grade achievement gap between lower and higher income youth can be explained by unequal access to summer learning opportunities during the elementary school years. While there is significant national and state focus on evolving school year core curriculum, there is limited attention and financial investment to make summer a productive and engaging learning experience, especially for low-income students.
“Summer learning loss is the great open space of education,” said Tom Davidson, EverFi Chief Executive Officer. “To close the widening achievement gap, we must close the summer engagement gap. The only options cannot be poorly funded remediation programs or pure entertainment options. We launched EverFi at TED six years ago, and we return to this innovative community to champion and fill this open space with real learning.”
The Verano digital learning experience will feature a scaffolding of age appropriate critical skill development that is calendared and pushed to students in bite-size, booster shots across the long days of summer. Subjects will include literacy and math reinforcement, as well as key life skills areas including digital citizenship, civic education, STEM readiness, and financial wellness. As important as the content, the web and mobile experience will allow students to opt-in to motivational elements to share virtual progress with family members, school mentors, and the EverFi network of summer coaches.
EverFi will partner with its network of more than 1,000 non-profits, community foundations, major sports leagues, and private sector partners, to bring this summer digital learning experience to students across the country, particularly in low-income communities. For Summer 2014, EverFi is selecting ten communities to immediately serve, including Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, southern Alabama, and the Mississippi Delta. The program will roll out to over two hundred communities in Summer 2015.
For more information on Verano and how to include students in your community, please email [email protected]