ICS (International Community School) Summer Bridge Program – By Nandita Thakur

This summer ICS’s halls were buzzing with activity. Whether they were performing cool science experiments or reading and discussing books as part of a book club, the kids were having a great time, learning was just a byproduct.

ICS or International Community School located in Decatur GA, is a charter school that caters to immigrant/refugee population. ICS’s students already faced a lot of challenges due to lack of resources as well as cultural and language barriers. Covid and online learning further exacerbated the situation resulting in a lot of kids struggling to keep up with their studies. In order to bridge the learning gap for these students , ICS started a program this summer called the Summer Bridge Reading Program. This program was entirely funded by Vibha as part of Vibha’s mission to support educational initiatives in local communities in the United States.

The broader goal of the program was to challenge students to become lifelong readers by enhancing their reading skills through targeted reading interventions. The team set a measurable goal that by the end of the program 50% of the students will increase one reading level as identified by the PV assessment. 45 students participated in the inaugural program that ran for 4 weeks during the summer of 2021. We were delighted to find out that at the end of the program ,34 out of 45 students increased their reading level by 1 or more reading levels i.e the 75% of students showed growth in 4 weeks.

ICS has plans to expand the program to more students next year as well as incorporate more STEM , art and music activities. Vibha is proud to be a supporter of such a worthy project.

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