Summer Adventures in Learning (SAIL) is a collective impact project that works to overcome summer learning loss. It brings funders together with program providers, the three local school districts, The Schools Foundation, and the Community Foundation to work collaboratively to improve student outcomes.
Data shows that summer learning loss accounts for nearly two-thirds of the ninth grade achievement gap in reading. This achievement gap disproportionately impacts low-income students, in part due to the "opportunity gap" with regard to access to summer enrichment opportunities. The good news is that participation in an effective summer learning program can not only reverse this learning loss and yield learning gains instead, but it can also benefit the child for at least two years afterwards.
Through the SAIL partnership, funders commit to using a joint application process for nonprofit organizations seeking grant support to add or enhance consistent academic components to summer youth programs.
Follow SAIL students progress in math, reading, social development on social media by searching the hashtag #SAILSmart
Heart of the Valley YMCA’s BELL Power Scholars Academy and Y Readers Programs, in collaboration with The C.A.R.E. Center, located at Madison County Elementary School
Heart of the Valley YMCA’s BELL Power Scholars Academy and Y Readers Programs, in collaboration with The C.A.R.E. Center, located at New Hope Elementary School
Heart of the Valley YMCA’s BELL Power Scholars Academy and Y Readers Programs, in collaboration with The C.A.R.E. Center, located at Owens Cross Roads Elementary School
Huntsville City Schools' Bridges to Learning Leadership Academy Program, in collaboration with American Baseball Foundation, located at Providence Elementary School
Huntsville City Schools' Bridges to Learning Leadership Academy Program, in collaboration with American Baseball Foundation, located at Ridgecrest Elementary School
Madison City Schools’ English Learner SAIL Program located at Mill Creek Elementary School
The grant application period for SAIL grants is open during the fall of each year for the following summer. Click on the buttons below to learn more about SAIL grants.
The Summer Adventures in Learning (SAIL) Program was developed in Birmingham as part of an action plan to respond to a survey of 37 Birmingham-area summer programs, conducted by the National Summer Learning Association in 2011. The SAIL Program was created to overcome summer learning loss. In the summer of 2012, a group of six Birmingham funders collaborated to launch the initial pilot projects of SAIL in their communities. By 2017, this group had grown to more than 40 funders supporting over 50 SAIL programs throughout Alabama.
According to the Summer Learning Association:
“Summer learning loss, the phenomenon where young people lose academic skills over the summer, is one of the most significant causes of the achievement gap between lower and higher income youth and one of the strongest contributors to the high school dropout rate. For many young people, the summer ‘opportunity gap’ contributes to gaps in achievement, employment and college and career success.
The good news is that the effect of participation in a summer learning program can benefit the child for at least two years afterwards.
Local and statewide funders, school districts, summer programs, and education service providers develop a strong collaboration network to provide accountability, to institute a Quality Assurance Framework, to provide a joint application for nonprofit organizations seeking grant support, and to engage the community toward a common goal. SAIL focuses on summer programs where students can explore new interests and skills and gain the support they need to prevent summer learning loss.
The pilot program in the Greater Huntsville area during the summer of 2017 showed similar results to those achieved in Birmingham since SAIL's inception. Students in the Greater Huntsville program experienced 2.3 months of reading gains and 1.1 months of math gains during the summer of 2017. These results confirm that SAIL is scalable and that consistent results can be achieved across different locations.
Non-profit organizations, governmental entities, and religious organizations who meet the requirements of IRS section 501(c)(3) and are seeking funding to add an intentionally academic component to your camps or expand an existing program to help prevent summer learning loss. Programs must adhere to the Quality Assurance Framework.
No! SAIL funders come together annually for a Funders’ Forum. Each funder will be able to evaluate the programs that have been selected and to decide where to place their grant dollars.