Schools offering summer classes to Siouxland students

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SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) — A Siouxland school district is working to bridge the education gap caused by the pandemic by offering summer classes.

School is almost out but maybe not for long.

“My kids excel in the classroom,” parent Angela Lias said. “They had a harder time being at home, staying in front of the computer screen just for the couple hours they were on there then being in a classroom.”

Angela Lias said her kids had a tough time with virtual learning. That has some Siouxland schools working to keep students from falling behind.

“This year is very important after being out of school for five months, SSCSD Summer School Principal Laura Sulzbach said. “Obviously students had some learning gaps, and so being able to extend our school year just a little bit longer to really focus on some of those foundational learning skills that they may have missed.”

That gap is projected to have long term affects especially for some.

“It’s going to be hardest on those who don’t have access to resources, those who don’t have access to internet and couldn’t access academic resources, those who didn’t have social resources, those who didn’t have emotional support,” Amy Schweinle, Dean of Education at University of South Dakota said. “People are really fairly optimistic that even if there is a gap, it isn’t huge and they will be able to make up for things.”

With the option of summer school and in-school tutoring, administrators expect to close the gap, and Lias hopes for the same.

“Anything our school district can do to help our kids learn and kind of bridge that gap for the time that they were away, I think it’s a great opportunity, even for a couple hours would be beneficial to our kids and our community,” Lias said.

Both South Sioux City and Sioux City Community Schools will be offering summer school classes starting in June. The classes are optional.

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