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Diocese of Central Gulf Coast summer reading program: Freedom School

Diocese of Central Gulf Coast summer reading program: Freedom School

An Episcopal priest who champions learning, and a retired teacher have created Freedom School, a summer program to bring kids in Pensacola up to grade level in reading. The Rev. Kammy Young is Canon Missioner for Development: Evangelism and Mission Engagement for the Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast. Mrs. Nettie Eaton is former principal at Booker T. Washington High School in Pensacola.


Mrs. Eaton was enjoying retirement until she heard about the non-profit Freedom School. “I can’t just sit back and know that I have the ability to help provide resources,” she said. “And I have an educational background so I can bring a lot to the table to help children that are in need in our community.”

Rev. Young is a lifelong champion of learning and helping others to become their best. Beyond the educational component of the Freedom School, there is daily affirmation. Rev. Young says, “They are resilient in the face of a lot of obstacles that they kind of recognize that they can overcome when they have access to this kind of program. Where they’re taught the skills of empowerment as well as, I think, the inspiration from the people around them.”

More about Freedom Schools at the website of the Diocese of Central Gulf Coast.

Effectiveness of CDF [Children’s Defense Fund] Freedom Schools Programs

    • Provides more instruction hours of reading than any other summer learning program;
    • Consistently produces the highest reading gains among the top 8 summer learning programs;
    • Increases the reading levels of students who are reading below the national average at the start of the summer program by a 1.2 year gain by the end of the summer program.

See also the school’s Facebook page.


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