County of Marin - News Releases - Summer Learning Program

For Immediate Release
June 22, 2016

Summer Learning Program is a Page-Turner

Marin County Free Library keeps fun education going during break from school

San Rafael, CA – The Marin County Free Library’s Summer Learning programming is in full swing and excited librarians and educators are doing a collective drum roll in anticipation of national Summer Learning Day on July 14.

A girl of about 6 years old wears headphones and looks at library computer screenNational Summer Learning Day is July 14.
In summer 2015, the Marin County Free Library (MCFL) had 6,830 participants in the summer program, and the eager staff is determined to keep the program growing. The Marin County Board of Supervisors, which includes an “E for Education” as one of its ongoing missions, supports MCFL’s efforts to become not just a place that supports reading but rather learning in general. Studies show that third-grade reading scores are highly correlated with later academic success and often indicate whether a student will graduate from high school.

“When we saw that 65 percent of kids from economically disadvantaged families cannot read proficiently by the third grade, we felt compelled to help change that,” said Sara Jones, MCFL Director. “Teachers and school administrators are working hard to remedy that trend, and our libraries can step in during the summer and pick up the baton to keep progress moving for these young kids.”

The National Summer Learning Association (NSLA) sponsors National Summer Learning Day on July 14 and is the only national nonprofit focused on closing the achievement gap by increasing summer learning opportunities for all youths. Like MCFL, the NSLA advocates for summer learning as a solution for equity and excellence in education with a shared goal of helping young people succeed in college, career and life.

In Marin, younger kids can sign up for the Summer Learning Challenge at any MCFL branch and receive a folder to help them keep track of the minutes they’ve read and provide ideas for fun learning activities. Kids can early a “Book Buck” for every 100 minutes read (or are read to), exchange them for prizes at library branches or donate them to help the Marin Special Olympics.

Special events are scheduled all summer as part of the Teen Summer Learning program such as henna art sessions, maker events and movie nights. Students can test their knowledge online related to trivia, sports and Marin County history and compete for prizes with others. Points are awarded for participation in posting book reviews, attending library events and other activities, and the grand prize points champion gets an iPad.

“Reading for fun broadens over the summer is a nice break from assigned reading during the school year because it tends to broaden a student’s horizons and develop new interests,” Jones said. “We are true believers that kids who participate in summer library programs are better prepared for the next school year, but we also want to make it fun. In the end, the kids have a great time and are off to a really good start toward academic success.”

Stop in to any MCFL branch or check for more details about the Summer Learning program.


Sara Jones
Marin County Free Library

3501 Civic Center Drive
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 473-6051
Email: Sara Jones
Library website