Suncoast Summer Reading Challenge

Research shows that children who do not read during the summer can lose up to three months of reading progress. That loss has a cumulative, long-term effect. Reading just six books at the appropriate reading level can prevent the “summer slide” and keep a struggling reader from regressing. In response, the Suncoast Campaign for Grade-Level Reading sponsors the Suncoast Summer Reading Challenge to encourage each participating student to read!


In 2020, SCGLR welcomed back the Suncoast Summer Reading Challenge and introduced THIS BOOK IS COOL! — a series of 100 webisodes to encourage a love of reading. It premiered on June 1, 2020, and since then, thousands of children from across the Suncoast region have qualified to receive free books thanks to the generosity of The Patterson Foundation. In 2021, 7,811 children participated; combined, they read 184,738 books!

2021 proved to be the most fun yet, with featured Family Engagement Nights sprinkled throughout the summer and 17 new webisodes!
Want to explore the possibilities? Email Beth Duda, director of the Suncoast Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, at

More Information

During Summer 2021, to avoid the “summer slide,” SCGLR engaged our four-county region and partnered with 80 summer camp providers and summer learning academies to encourage a love for reading.

Why? Because nationwide, children from asset-limited families can lose an average of 2 to 2.5 months of reading skills each summer!
  • In 2021, 7,811 children participated

  • Of 7,811 kids, 7,323 read six or more books!

How many books did 7,811 kids actually read? Drumroll please…

  • 184,738 Books!

In partnership with the public school systems, iReady scores will be used to determine the amount of summer gains or losses in reading for those who participated through a Suncoast Summer Book Challenge site.

While it’s important that the data from the test scores show an upward trend, it’s worthwhile to note the valuable impact of connections made, of relationships built, and of memories created during the reading challenge can influence a ♥ of learning.

The Suncoast Summer Reading Challenge is implemented by SCGLR and promoted through local summer camps and businesses to encourage children to read, reducing the “summer slide.” Learn the ins and outs and everything in between about the 2020 Suncoast Summer Reading Challenge, and view sites from 2020 that had zero learning loss or experienced reading gains through the challenge.


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