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Students face summer learning loss
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Students participate in class activity.
MPB Staff

As Mississippi students enter summer break, many will forget some of what they learned over the school year. MPB's Alexis Ware reports. 

Nationwide, students lose about one month of learning over the summer according to Oxford Learning. This learning loss is commonly called the  "summer slide", and affects students of all grade levels. Suzanne Ryals is the principal of Bramlett Elementary in Oxford. She says summer learning loss is a big issue in Mississippi.

"We know statistically that our students struggle and as far as nationally comparing other students in their reading development. So, it's a time when our students in Mississippi, especially with low-income students, we want to really work hard within our school systems and our communities to develop opportunities for kids." 

Ryals says making sure students continue to read over the summer can help combat the issue. Nathan Oakley is with the Mississippi Department of Education. He says parents play an important role in preventing the summer slide.

"There are also great opportunities for parents to foster that same kind of love for learning and desire to continue learning in the summer through family trips to the library or family trips to museums."

Ryals says as a result of the learning loss, teachers spend weeks at the start of the school year reviewing information taught the previous year. The National Summer Learning Association says because of this, summer learning loss contributes to the long-standing achievement gap between low-income and higher-income students.