Springboard Collaborative has long believed that connecting home and school was the key to closing the literacy gap. “When it comes to educating kids, there’s no going around parents,” says Alejandro Gibes de Gac, founder and chief executive of Springboard Collaborative, “We’ve got to work with and through them.”
The organization approaches its work by coaching both teachers and family members to develop a reading plan that helps children strengthen their reading skills. Called Family-Educator Learning Accelerators (or FELAs), these 5-10 week cycles partner teachers and family members to help PreK-4th graders reach their reading goals. Through a combination of personalized instruction for children, workshops for parents, and professional development on family engagement for teachers, Springboard Collaborative has shown an ability to replace typical learning loss (usually from summer) with substantive reading gains.
A recent evaluation showed that across all grades, students who participated in Springboard’s summer programming showed improvement in their reading assessments; the largest gains were for students who started below grade level. Early results from Springboard’s virtual program in Summer 2020 suggest that families succeeded in improving their children’s reading skills and habits even amidst though classes were held online. Families averaged more than 26 daily minutes of reading at home, and 84 percent agreed or strongly agreed that their child’s reading had gotten better.
Overdeck Family Foundation supports Springboard’s innovation and scaling plans, which include tripling their reach through the virtual delivery of the model in SY 2020-21.