Return to Headlines

LCPS gearing up for 'blockbuster' of summer learning

Next month, Lenoir County Public Schools debuts what it’s billing as a “blockbuster” of summer learning opportunities – four different academic camps designed to help K-12 students get ahead and have fun.

“All of our students will have somewhere to go, and we’re very excited about that,” Associate Superintendent Frances Herring said. “July is our month of summer learning.”

Three teachers -- one male and two females -- sit in an empty classroom working on their laptops.Already, nearly 2,000 students have enrolled in the sessions that begin July 5 for elementary students and July 11 for middle and high school students. All camps run Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will end on July 28.

“We’ve designed a summer of learning that’s going to give students a head start on next school year,” said Nichole Hathaway, a Contentnea-Savannah K-8 School faculty member and administrator of the Career Accelerator program, one of the new camps LCPS is premiering this summer. “We want to help these students be successful next year, so we’re getting a jumpstart on it.”

The four academic camps are:

· Read to Achieve and Summer Enrichment Academy (SEA), focusing on reading and literacy skills to prepare K-5 students for the next grade level through small-group instruction. The camp will operate at three elementary schools – Banks, Northeast and Pink Hill – but will accommodate students from across the county. As with all camps, bus transportation is provided and breakfast and lunch are served without cost to the students.

· Summer Bridge Academy, another new camp that will give rising sixth and ninth graders an advanced looked at next school year’s learnings and lead them through activities that will ease their transition to middle and high school. The camp will operate at LCPS’s three traditional high schools – Kinston, North Lenoir and South Lenoir.

· SEA camp for the coming school year’s middle and high school students, preparing them for the next grade level and providing course and credit recovery opportunities. It will be located at the three high schools.

· Career Accelerator, an opportunity for middle and high school students to explore potential careers in sessions typically a week long. With a dozen career and interest areas to choose from – aviation to art to agriculture – students can sign up for one week, two weeks or all three weeks. The three high schools will host some or all of the sessions.

More information about each of the four camps and the registration form can be found online at

Students heading not only to another grade but to another school in August could benefit from Summer Bridge Academy, according to Stephanie Harrell, North Lenoir High faculty member who is administering the summer program.

“The program is designed to help students understand how middle school is different from elementary school, how high school is different from middle school,” Harrell said. “They’ll dip their toes in curriculum for sixth grade and ninth grade (respectively) in reading and math, but they’ll also have a series of elective opportunities and will work on a community service project to help them make a connection with their new school.”

Career Accelerator, on the other hand, takes students outside the classroom, encouraging them to connect what they’ve learned in school to career choices that interest them. 

“They learn what they need to know to have this job and what they would be doing in that job,” Hathaway said. For instance, the aviation module, called Ace Academy, will connect students with Lenoir Community College’s Advanced Aviation Facility and will feature field trips to aviation-oriented employers at the Global TransPark.

“Students will be able to explore areas they wouldn’t be able to explore during the school year,” Harrell said.

“It’s about learning, but it’s about having fun learning,” Hathaway said. “It’s about expanding your horizons.”

Photo caption:

Teachers, from left, Jacinta Clemmon, Zachary Fritz and Michelle Jarman prepare lesson plans Tuesday for fourth-grade instruction at LCPS’s Summer Enrichment Academy at Banks Elementary School. SEA, which will operate at three elementary schools around the county, begins July 5. Summer learning camps for middle and high school students begin July 11.