GLENWOOD SPRINGS - A Roaring Fork Valley academic program is reporting strong results from its debut this past summer.
The program, part of Summer Advantage USA, served 410 kindergarten through third-grade students at the Basalt, Sopris and Glenwood Springs elementary schools.
The free five-week program included breakfast and lunch, bus transportation, weekly speakers and field trips. Students spent the mornings reading, writing and studying math, and in the afternoons they participated in creative and learning-based projects, such as science experiments, dance, music and art.
Summer Advantage was privately funded in the Roaring Fork Valley by Summit 54 in cooperation with the Re-1 School District.
According to a press release, the results for the Roaring Fork Valley surpassed expectations for the program.
"The common summer learning loss normally experienced was not only reversed, but academic gains were made," according the press release. "Summer Advantage scholars progressed further in mathematics, reading and language skills than the national average, according to performance on the Iowa Test of Basic Skills. Results show 3.6 months of reading skills gained and 1.7 months of math skills gained over the five-week period."
The program also received positive teacher, student and parent approval ratings. Parent and scholar engagement and teacher satisfaction ranked high, with more than 89 percent of parents satisfied with the program as well as 97.2 percent of the scholars saying they liked to learn and 94 percent of teachers saying they found the program personally rewarding, according to the press release.