RIDE Announces $700,000 Investment in Algebra 1 Summer Readiness Camps for Rising 9th Graders

Published on Wednesday, May 15, 2024

PROVIDENCE, RI -- The Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) today announced the agency will invest approximately $700,000 towards specialized summer readiness camps aimed at bolstering Algebra 1 proficiency for rising 9th graders. The summer readiness camps will provide students from 14 local education agencies (LEAs) with a comprehensive and engaging learning experience. The strategic initiative underscores the state’s commitment to ensuring students have the mathematics knowledge, skills, and mindsets they will need to be successful in high school mathematics. With the #AttendanceMattersRI campaign and Governor McKee’s #Learn365RI initiative, Rhode Island leaders have focused on accelerating students’ learning through the expansion of access to high-quality extended learning programs and promoting attendance to improve student outcomes statewide.

“Through these summer readiness camps, we are not only preparing rising 9th graders for the rigors of high school mathematics but also instilling in them a passion for learning and problem solving that will serve them throughout their academic and professional journeys,” said Governor Dan McKee. “My administration is committed to expanding year-round learning and improving academic outcomes. I commend RIDE, our school districts, and partners for their work offering students rigorous summer learning opportunities that will set them up for success.” 

The following local education agencies received funding for the math camps: 

  • Blackstone Academy Charter School 
  • Cranston  
  • East Greenwich 
  • Newport  
  • North Providence  
  • Sheila “Skip” Nowell Leadership Academy  
  • Paul Cuffee Charter School 
  • Portsmouth 
  • Providence 
  • Scituate 
  • Smithfield 
  • Warwick 
  • Woonsocket 

The camps will feature authentic projects where students will apply Algebra 1 readiness skills to tackle real-life problems, craft and test solutions, and have fun in the process. The Providence Public School District in collaboration with Electric Boat and RoboNation will offer SeaPerch camp, which will enable students to sharpen their math skills while designing, building, testing, and improving underwater robotic vehicles. Students in North Providence will work with the local police department to study intersections with known congestion and recommend changes to improve traffic flow. East Greenwich, in collaboration with West Warwick students and educators, will participate in a “Tiny House Challenge,” where they will work in teams to design a small, efficient, and accessible home. Newport students will apply Algebra 1 readiness skills as they calculate the costs of goods and build business plans. 

“Algebra 1 serves as a critical gateway to advanced math learning and future academic success. By investing in engaging and enriching extended learning, we are empowering rising high schoolers with the tools and knowledge they need to excel in high school and beyond,” said Commissioner Angélica Infante-Green. "As Rhode Island continues to make academic gains in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, we remain committed to supporting our schools and expanding access to high-quality learning opportunities for our kids.” 

Rhode Island’s Readiness-Based Graduation Requirements, revised in November 2022, set a high bar for math achievement with a required, rigorous math course sequence for high schoolers beginning with the class of 2028. Further, in Rhode Island, school leaders have attributed high-quality curriculum materials (HQCM) to students’ academic growth in math. RIDE has been facilitating professional learning around HQCM implementation in elementary and secondary schools for both teachers and school leaders, among many efforts to expand on-the-ground support and bolster math proficiency.  

The program is made possible by federal ReThinkRI grant funds and ESSER III funds. The Rhode Island districts selected for funding convened on May 9 to network with colleagues and hear about relevant research for boosting student engagement and self-efficacy in math. For more information on the Algebra 1 Readiness Camp pilot, local education agencies may contact wendy.surr@ride.ri.gov.