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'Summer slide’ occurs when students lose some of the knowledge they gained during the school year. Courtesy photo
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How to prevent ‘summer slide’ while school’s out

By Ingo Hentschel

Market Vice President, Cox Communications

Summer vacation is still in session for many students throughout San Diego County, who may be more focused on water slides than the “summer slide,” which occurs during summer break when students lose some of the knowledge they gained during the school year.

Only 48% of parents with school-age children have even heard of the summer slide, much less know how to combat it. 

But there are some fun and easy ways the internet can help students – and their parents and caregivers – counteract the effects of the summer slide.

Free game-based programs After a day outdoors, at the beach or camp, students can continue to keep their minds engaged with online educational games. Search by grade level and topic (from reading and language to math and science) at Common Sense Media, which also offers reviews of the games. 

Summer Reading – The simple act of reading a blog post, news article or book out loud to another person can help with reading comprehension and vocabulary. Have your child or teen search online for a blog or story on a topic that interests them. Maybe they prefer soccer over science, music over math or Harry Potter over history. Or maybe STEM (science, technology engineering and math) is their favorite topic.

Cox Digital Academy Students and their family members can sharpen their digital literacy skills through free educational videos, tutorials and games for students of all ages, including links to 30 Cool Things Kids Can Learn Online (for Free!).

Sign up for the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP)Getting connected is the beginning of any online learning journey, but despite significant progress over the past decade, internet access remains a major challenge for lower income households. This forces some families to turn to restaurants, libraries, and other public places to connect – which is inconvenient and cumbersome for already busy families. Households that participate in the National School Lunch Program, SNAP, federal public housing, WIC, or other federal assistance programs – could qualify for the ACP and receive up to $30 a month for their home internet service to keep their families connected.

Cox offers several low-cost internet options and works with schools and community partners to bridge the digital divide so that all students can continue learning when they’re not in the classroom. 

• Cox’s Connect2Compete program for K-12 families provides home internet for $9.95 a month to qualifying families.

• Cox also offers a $30 a month ConnectAssist option for lower income households without school-age children such as retirees, veterans and college students. 

Coupled with the ACP’s $30 a month credit, Connect2Compete and ConnectAssist are giving qualifying households access to free internet service.

If you’re not in the Cox service area, be sure to check with your internet provider to see if they participate in the ACP.

If you or someone you know could benefit from these offerings, visit so the only sliding your family is doing this summer is at the park or poolside. 

A resident of North County, where he and his wife raised their children, Ingo Hentschel proudly served as a crew chief in the United States Marine Corps prior to starting a career in technology at Cox Communications.

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