Summer Learning

Summer Learning

The Program

The San José Public Library’s Summer Learning initiative provides a series of programs and incentives that encourage active and engaged learning and promotes reading over the summer months. The eight-week program, generally from June to July, includes “pre-readers” (age 0-5) aiming to read 8 books over the course of the program, while young readers (ages 5-12), teens (age 12-17), and adults (ages 18 and older) complete a total of 8 hours of reading.

All participants under 18 years old can receive 2 free books at any Express Pickup location, and all participants who complete the Summer Learning program have a chance to win a grand prize. In addition to reading programs, SJPL Summer Learning offers a Graphic Novel Making Contest, coding camps, additional STEAM programming, summer meal programs, and anti-racist resources.

The Need

The Library believes that reading is learning, especially for youth. Studies consistently show that summer learning, and in particular reading, can help prevent the “summer slide” effect — a loss of up to two months of academic progress. Summer learning loss accounts for 2/3 of the 9th grade achievement gap, and this loss is cumulative, deepening each summer. Students from low-income households are far more likely to experience a significant loss of learning over the summer, and with 8.4% of San José residents living at or below the poverty line and 37% of Santa Clara County’s 3rd graders currently reading below grade level, access to books and educational programming is key for these students’ learning retention. SJPL’s Summer Learning programs are designed to provide this access.

The Impact

Summer Learning programs served a total of 12,751 students of all ages in 2022 – more than the combined 2020 and 2021 totals. 21,000 prize award books were given away, including 400+ in Spanish, Vietnamese, and Chinese. There were 137 Learning programs held across all 25 Library branches.

Read to learn and win prizes!

The San José Public Library invites readers of all ages to expand their knowledge over the summer by reading and learning.

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Summer Learning San Jose Public Library
A Parent's Story

“One of our absolute favorite learning classes. I cannot believe how much my child is growing in their artistic talent and knowledge of the ABCs. Thank you so much for offering these classes!”

-Summer Learning Program Parent




Students of all ages served in 2022

Books given away this year

Graphic novel submissions

Summer Learning at San Jose library

Make A Donation

If you would like to make a gift to support this program, please visit the donate page on this website, select “Other” under “Where to Give” and indicate Summer Learning in the space provided.