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Launch to Learn curbs summer learning loss

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Jeanette Brahl, United Way of Central New Mexico, Chief of Communications, 505.245.1740; cell 505.975.7557
Rhiannon Samuel, Office of Mayor Richard J. Berry, Director of Communications, 505.980.3567
Amy Carr, Explora, Publications and Marketing Manager, 505.224.8346

ALBUQUERQUE, NM, May 19, 2017 - The City of Albuquerque in partnership with Mission: Graduate, an initiative of the United Way of Central New Mexico, will kick off Launch to Learn 2017 at the New Mexico Science Fiesta at noon on Saturday, May 20, in Tiguex Park. The Launch to Learn initiative is in its third year curbing summer learning loss. The partnership of about 50 public and private partners connects youth to quality, integrated summer learning experiences along with providing science activities that children can work on with the adults in their lives.

According to the research gathered by the Campaign for Grade Level Reading, low-income students are more likely than their higher-income peers to lose ground academically when they are out of school for the summer. This summer learning loss slows their progress toward attaining reading proficiency and exacerbates the achievement gap with their higher-income peers.

“Our kids deserve the best opportunities for them to learn and lead, especially during the critical summer months,” said Albuquerque’s Mayor, Richard J. Berry. “I believe Launch to Learn is the nation’s best summer program of its kind and I am thankful to all our local partners who believe and invest in our most precious gift, our youth- our future.”

New Mexico Science Fiesta, presented by Explora and a collaboration of local science, cultural, and educational organizations, is a perfect fit with the Launch to Learn program because they offer a great start to summer learning. The Science Fiesta, which is from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., helps connect families with the amazing and varied roles that science and technology play in our lives, and can spark additional interest in STEM fields and careers.

The Launch to Learn summer learning framework has three objectives:

  1. Connect youth to quality, integrated summer learning activities at 18 partner locations and through science activities that encourage children and the adults in their life to work together;
  2. Ensure that youth have access to healthy meals and snacks in the summer months; and
  3. Ensure that youth have access to quality health care services through two Fun and Wellness Fairs scheduled in conjunction with Albuquerque Public Schools.

The Family Summer Adventure Guide, available in English and Spanish, can be picked up at any of the  Partner Sites (listed below) and will be distributed to children at all APS K-3+ schools. Children who participate in activities at the Partner Sites will be rewarded with stickers that can be collected in the guide. At home, they can work on fun science activities selected specifically to provide engagement opportunities for children and adults. More information is available at Parents can get weekly tips by following along on Facebook at or by texting L2LSummer to 51-555.  

Mission: Graduate is a cradle-to-career partnership consisting of educators, local employers, educational support providers, government leaders and citizens who are committed to a goal of 60,000 new graduates with college degrees and certificates in central New Mexico by the year 2020. Mission: Graduate is an initiative of the United Way of Central New Mexico. To learn more, visit #60Kby2020 #ECAPMG #MissionGraduate #LaunchtoLearn

United Way of Central New Mexico, founded in 1934, serves a four-county region. UWCNM’s mission is to bring people and resources together to measurably improve lives and strengthen our communities. To learn more, visit or call 505-247-3671.

Explora is a world-class science center and children’s museum, an innovative learning center whose mission is: Creating opportunities for inspirational discovery and the joy of lifelong learning through interactive experiences in science, technology, engineering, art, and math. For more information about Explora and the NM Science Fiesta call Explora at 505-224-8323.

Partner Sites include: ABQ BioPark, Anderson Abruzzo International  Balloon Museum,  Bookworks, Explora, Horizons Albuquerque at Bosque School, Keshet, Mama’s Minerals, National Hispanic Cultural Center, NM Museum of Natural History & Science, NM Philharmonic, The Carino Toy Lending Library, The National Museum of Nuclear Science & History, The Public Library Albuquerque and Bernalillo County, UNM Continuing Education Summer Camps, and Valle del Oro