SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - In an effort to keep students sharp over the summer break, the Savannah-Chatham County Public School System assigns a summer reading list.
Students read an assigned number of books off a reading list, then write up a reflection and summary.
One district board member voiced concerns over the increasing workload falling on students over the summer and the negative effects it can have. First District board member Julie Wade said it’s an issue she’s seen play out at home with her own kids, as well as with the teens she helps at a youth outreach center in Savannah.
Schools are not only assigning the summer reading. There is additional work on top of that.
Wade told WTOC during Wednesday’s informal meeting, it creates three scenarios. Either a student is stressed and not really taking a needed break and completing the assignments, the student is reluctant to do it and battling with parents who are trying to push them to do the work, or the student is not doing it at all and coming into the school year already way behind.
“I don’t think in any of those three instances we’re preventing summer slide or creating additional academic experiences. What’s happening is, kids are showing up on the first day of particularly, high school, and they now have two weeks to do it," Wade said. "So, either you’re coming in and your summer homework is done and it’s burdened your summer and you’re turning it in, or you’re not doing it so you’re coming in one step behind and now you’re having to play catch-up.”
For high school students, the summer reading assignments, which range anywhere from 2 to 5 books and reports on each, are due Aug. 26. The superintendent says she’ll be looking into the issue.