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Philanthropic Dollars Providing Louisiana Children Access to Summer Learning Program

by Minden Press-Herald

Overdeck Family Foundation partners with a national PreK learning nonprofit to make sure 1,000 Louisiana children are prepared for kindergarten this fall.

Baton Rouge, LA (March 1, 2022) — Understanding that far too many children across Louisiana are entering kindergarten unprepared, the Overdeck Family Foundation has partnered with national education nonprofit Waterford.org to provide a solution for 1,000 children. Waterford Upstart is a research-based and third-party validated PreK learning program done in the home and, thanks to this funding, will cost families nothing to participate this summer. 

Waterford Upstart is an in-home, personalized PreK learning solution that prepares children for kindergarten by giving families the tools they need to become the first and most influential teachers of their children. Those tools include a computer, internet access and phone calls from a coach offering tips to facilitate the academic instruction offline, as well.

In June, children in Louisiana will begin learning to read using Waterford Upstart Summer Learning Path for 20 minutes a day, five days a week. There is a math-and-science component families can take advantage of, if they choose. 

“My favorite aspect of the program, what I call the ‘secret sauce,’ is the way adults are encouraged to engage in their child’s learning. It builds confidence in both caregiver and child. And when families are involved in a child’s education, research shows the child does better,” Waterford.org national spokesperson Kim Fischer said. 

Overdeck Family Foundation has a goal of providing all children the opportunity to unlock their potential. 

The mission of Waterford.org is to achieve universal literacy through equity, access and parent empowerment. Summer Learning Path is a condensed version of the full-year Waterford Upstart program. It was created at the start of the pandemic to provide an academic boost for children who were removed from their classrooms. 

“We just want kiddos reading and learning with confidence from the moment they enter the classroom,” Fischer said. 

Research shows that the average Waterford Upstart graduate enters kindergarten reading at nearly a first-grade level and maintains those gains through the fourth grade.

Families who believe their children could benefit from Waterford Upstart Summer Learning Path can enroll today by going to waterford.org/summer or calling 1-888-982-9898.

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