Campaign for Children Statement on City’s Summer Rising Plan

“The Campaign for Children applauds the Mayor’s announcement to expand summer programming for children. The Summer Rising initiative will be an important step towards children and families’ recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and the academic, economic, and social devastation it has wrought. By combining academic resources with summer enrichment programming at no cost to families, the city will provide students with a critical support system at a time when they need it most. We are also pleased to see a focus on social emotional learning and supports included for students with disabilities.

The success of Summer Rising also relies heavily on cross-agency coordination between DYCD, DOE and DOHMH, and a partnership with CBOs to run a successful initiative of this scale. Coordination is required around the logistics of program services, staffing, parent engagement, and children’s enrollment. Increased support will be needed to ensure that CBOs are able to meet the numerous regulatory requirements needed for summer programming. Specifically, focused attention is necessary to enable programs to secure the needed licenses as well as to ensure adequate staffing and timely background checks so that programs can be up and running by July. Programs will also need support for marketing and enrollment set to begin April 26th, and families should be offered flexible enrollment options and be able to choose to have children participate for part of the day or part of the week.

Additionally, we urge the city to take this opportunity to break down barriers to access, including providing transportation, allowing for direct enrollment of children by CBOs that are currently providing afterschool support, and ensuring outreach to families with children currently living in homeless shelters or who are in foster care and are expanded to include options for children 4 years-old and younger. To truly ensure that this program becomes the new normal for summer, the Mayor must baseline these funds now, including the funding to provide both academic and social emotional supports. We look forward to working alongside city leaders to ensure all New York children and families can access the enriching summer and educational programming they need and deserve.”

Download the statement here.

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