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Scholars Unlimited

Scholars Unlimited's programs combine literacy, STEM, social emotional learning, and recreation to support the development of the whole child - all provided by highly qualified staff and community partners. The result? Summer and after-school programs that are educational, engaging, and fun.

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Scholars After School Tutoring and Enrichment

Class

Education 

Beneficiaries

Children Only (5 - 14 years)
Ethnic/Racial Minorities -- General

Description

Scholars Unlimited's Scholars After-School program is aimed at children who begin the school year reading at least one grade lower than grade level. At the beginning of the program, the DIBELS assessment is administered to every student to determine his or her educational needs. Then, students are grouped according to those needs. Each group receives small-group instruction (one certified teacher assisting six students) using the Just Right Reading curriculum, and self-paced computer-based learning using the Lexia learning system.

Participating students, ages 6 thru 11, receive intensive academic supports two days per week; at most schools, we also offer enrichment and recreation programming the other days in order to provide high-quality after-school care five days per week. Students at these comprehensive sites participate in activities including golf and swimming, arts and crafts, field trips, and service-learning projects; additional learning opportunities are embedded into enrichment activities. In addition to supporting supplementary learning, this aspect of our programs promotes the development of pro-social behaviors and youth protective factors, including resiliency.

About 900 children are annually served in our after school program.

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Evidence of Program's Success

Scholars Unlimited's programs are proven to help students master fundamental reading skills and move closer to or reach grade-level proficiency in reading. Outcomes for the 2018-2019 after school programs include:
• 80.2 percent of after-school students achieved grade-level proficiency in fundamental literacy skills as measured by the DIBELS PSF test, which is considered a reliable predictor of later reading achievement.
• 51.6 percent of after-school students achieved grade-level proficiency in reading fluency as measured by the DIBELS Oral Reading Fluency (ORF) test.
• 47.7 percent of after-school students achieved grade-level proficiency in reading comprehension as measured by the DIBELS ORF-Retell test.

Signature Summer Learning Program

Class

Education 

Beneficiaries

Children Only (5 - 14 years)
Ethnic/Racial Minorities -- General
Poor, Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent

Description

Scholars Unlimited's signature program provides intensive literacy instruction plus enrichment and recreational programming over a six-week period during the summer break. Participating students, ages 6 thru 11, receive three hours of literacy instruction and intervention each day, tailored to meet the individual learning needs of each child.

Students participate in a number of activities, including small-group instruction, reading with re-tell (to increase comprehension), guided reading, and written responses to reading. Students are grouped according to their needs, based on initial DIBELS assessments that are administered to each child; licensed teachers work with groups of six students to provide individually focused support.

Following lunch, students continue learning through enrichment programming - including hands-on science activities, field trips, and service-learning projects - and participate in a number of recreational activities.

Our signature summer program annually serves about 1,235 disadvantaged children.

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Evidence of Program's Success

While analysis of summer 2018 DIBELS data is not fully completed, we can report that:
• On average, our youngest students gained 6.1 points on the First Sound Fluency test. (DIBELS expects students to gain 5 points during five weeks of instruction.) Gains were greatest at sites where we had the largest percentage of English language learners.
• Our summer students gained, on average, 10.7 points on the PSF sub-test. (DIBELS expects a gain of 5 points over the same time span.)
• Students gained, on average, 4.6 points on the Oral Reading Fluency sub-test. (DIBELS expects gains of 3.8 to 7.0 points over the same timeframe, depending on grade level.)
Scholars Unlimited used the Social Competence Scale (SCS) to assess social-emotional skills in three domains: pro-social behaviors, communication, and self-control. Using the SCS as a pre- and post-test, staff rate each student on how well they demonstrate behaviors such as "cooperates with peers" and "expresses needs and feelings appropriately." Results show that our after-school and summer students consistently demonstrated positive growth across the board, on every indicator.

Not only are Scholars Unlimited's programs consistent in moving students closer to grade-level proficiency in reading, but we are effective in keeping more students at grade-level proficiency who participate in our programs longer-term.



Key aspects of this profile information have been reviewed by Community First Foundation staff. Each organization is exclusively responsible for the content that appears on the profile page. Community First Foundation offers general guidance as to the purpose of each area but does not require or encourage charities to include anything in particular in each section.