Summer Learning

Summer Solutions 2022 - Accessing Summer Grants

OregonASK will be working with OAESD to support programs on accessing and utilizing Oregon Community Summer Grant Funds to the fullest. Please contact with specific inquiries. Applications are due by July 15th so make sure to reach out now with questions.

This “Summer Solutions” document addresses many of the challenges that community-based organizations are facing in applying for Community Summer Grants, such as insurance requirements, for-profit businesses subcontracting for a “sponsoring” organization, recruiting and retaining staff and participants, providing transportation and food, finding good locations, and purchasing materials or equipment for programs. 

Summer 2021 Program Survey Data & Report

Check out our Summer 2021 Executive Summary and Summer 2021 At a Glance infographic from our report, Whatever it Takes: Summer 2021And don’t miss out on the recommendations included in the report based on last year’s survey responses: 

  • Summer funding should be committed well in advance. Many districts and community organizations had to compromise on quality or duration in 2021 because they didn’t have enough time to plan. Research shows that planning for high-quality summer programs should begin in September. 
  • Summer funding must include direct support for community-based organizations. Nearly 60% of the programs reported here were operated by non-profit and for-profit organizations within the community. These community-based organizations make up the heart of summer learning in Oregon, and future fundings streams should acknowledge and support them by creating significant and dedicated funding streams for community organizations.
  • Invest in resources to support school-community partnerships. Partnerships between schools and community based organizations strengthen summer learning opportunities, and are mutually beneficial, and research shows that these partnerships increase benefits and lower costs.
  • Create systems for accountability and reporting. Any future funding for summer learning should include reporting systems that help identify gaps in access, and also help programs assess and improve the quality of their program.

Summer Funding for 2022

The Oregon Legislature allocated $150 million to support summer learning for 2022. $50 million will be available directly to community organizations from the Oregon Association of Education Service Districts. They have not released any specific information yet but have a form HERE you can use to ensure you receive application information when it is released.

Resources from Summer 2021

While we can agree 2020 was not a normal summer, we have an opportunity to make 2021 a memorable summer for other reasons. We hope you are able to take advantage of federal and state funding and resources, increase engagement, and meet the demands of youth and families in Oregon. The afterschool and summer field in Oregon has responded positively and demonstrated a “can do” attitude, flexibility and innovation from organizations, both large and small, throughout our state. Summer programs are vital in supporting families as we continue toward recovery.

Check out these resources to help get ready for a memorable summer:

Here’s a few resources to help you plan for summer 2021:

Additionally, find other resources available with protocols for mitigating COVID-19 recommendations can be found on our COVID-19 Resource Page. 

Find out more about OregonASK's 2021 Summer Program Survey

Learn more about Oregon’s needs in our 2017 Smart Summers Report

Importance of summer learning

The need for summer learning

National research shows that roughly two-thirds of the ninth-grade achievement gap between lower and higher income youth can be attributed to unequal access to summer learning opportunities during the elementary school years (Alexander et al. 2007). While not in the classroom over the summer most students lose about two months of grade level equivalency in math computation skills over the summer months, and low-income students also lose more than two months in reading achievement (Cooper, 1996). Additionally, parents consistently cite summer as the most difficult time to ensure that their children have productive things to do (Duffett et al, 2004). Check out our Summer Learning graphic for more statistics.

Summer learning makes the national news...and Oregon, too

A recent article released in US News highlights the importance of taking action to support summer learning. Is Summer Breaking America’s Schools has excerpts from OregonASK’s own Beth Unverzagt and National Summer Learning Association CEO Matt Boulay. We know that the need is real and hope that you will also be able to help us build awareness as we share this story with local policy makers and summer partners.

children, football, attack

Summer Learning Partners & Resources

OregonASK is excited to continue supporting summer learning opportunities in a variety of ways, including participation in several projects we facilitate as well as connecting programs with local partners such as:

  • The utilization of federally funded Summer Meal sites, geared at providing access to food for more youth during the summer months. To find Summer Meal sites near you click here. 
  • Coordination with the Summer Reading Program, hosted by State Library of Oregon. Find your local library to see what programs and incentives they are offering this year!
  • National Summer Learning Association providing resources for parents, educators, and administrators to expand access to summer learning opportunities.
  • The Summer Meals Activity Guide is designed to help summer meal site volunteers maximize the quality of their summer meal sites. This short toolkit provides basic information about food safety, working with children, and includes some activities you can do at your site to attract more participants and create more fun! The activities and tips are only a starting point, meant to inspire program volunteers to be creative with their offerings!
  • STEM in Summer Activity Guide is a collection of creative and accessible science activities. The toolkit includes a framework for teaching STEM activities and experiments from the Museum of Science and Industry Chicago, the Educational Equity Center at AED, Woodburn Afterschool Club and Pacific University. Designed to be used by anyone, the activities are for a range of age groups and cover subjects from astronomy to bubbles!

Summer Program Survey 2021

OregonASK is collecting information about summer learning opportunities in Oregon through a survey of community organizations, agencies, schools, or any other entity that is offering camps, classes, or child care this summer, and we are hoping you can spare a few minutes to take our survey, linked below.

This survey is designed for community organizations, agencies, schools, or any other entity that is offering camps, classes, or child care this summer. If you’ll be having fun with children and youth this summer, this survey is for you!

As a special thank you, we are delighted to offer a free registration to our fall conference to every organization who completes the survey (limited to one per organization). 

Check out more information on this Summer Survey Overview or contact OregonASK at

Check out the Latest on this year's National Summer Learning Week!

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