CSI students wave a flag for summer learning


Strini Reddy with enthusiastic Community Schools Investigators participants

Strini Reddy with enthusiastic Community Schools Investigators participants

In yesterday’s Winnipeg Free Press, you can find an interesting article by Nick Martin about Community Schools Investigators, a program “designed to help kids in inner-city schools strengthen their math, reading and other education skills over the summer, while having fun.”

Community Schools Investigators (or CSI – the program was named by the students themselves after they compared their own science experiments to the lab work conducted by characters on the TV show) was launched several years ago when two retired educators, Strini Reddy and Karen Botting, took on the case of low graduation rates in Winnipeg’s inner city. They set out to solve the issue of summer learning loss, the tendency for children to lose literacy and numeracy skills during the break.

Reddy spoke about the importance of summer learning activities not long after after United Way first began investing in the CSI initiative in 2008:

“These children often fall further behind over the long summer period because their families cannot provide them with a range of stimulating activities,” he said. “Program fees, location and transportation all serve as powerful barriers. Reading abilities and math skills suffer in particular, widening the gap between them and their peers.”

The Free Press article showcased the result of one of those stimulating activities, a remix of the popular K’naan song Wavin’ Flag. Listen to their remix below:

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