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Another reason for summer school: national security?

Staff PhotojournalistRetired military officers think so.

The nonprofit Mission: Readiness (affiliated with the public safety-related group Fight Crime: Invest in Kids) put out a report this week arguing that summer inactivity was contributing to the obesity crisis and high dropout rate — which, in turn, poses a threat to the economy and the military’s ability to recruit.

What do you make of that link? I wrote about it in today’s Oakland Tribune.

While we’re on the subject: In case you missed it, summer programs at Global Family Elementary School, Roosevelt Middle School and Madison Middle School were featured in Sunday’s paper.

Along with the story, you’ll find a video of the new summer science classes at Global Family (free STEM courses are in place at 17 Oakland elementary and middle schools this year) and a very practical feature on how to make s’mores without a campfire. (As my friend Sandler found out, solar ovens are great for melting chocolate, but don’t do much to marshmallows.)

photo by D. Ross Cameron/Oakland Tribune

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My summer in Finland

Jonathan Trinh, a student at Skyline High School in Oakland, writes us from Europe -Katy

Of all countries in the world to spend two months I chose Finland, the small (about the size of Montana), northern European country home to Santa Claus and reindeer.

“Why?” is the question that I’m most frequently bombarded with here. Reasons range from getting away from the city life and going on some sort of vacation on the other side of the planet. But the main reason for me to become an exchange student was to learn about how another, and probably the most different, peoples lived and actually experience that lifestyle for myself personally.

I have so many memories and time has seemed to elapse overnight. It’s been the fastest two months of my life — and sometimes the longest days, too, since the sun doesn’t set until very late during the summer. Continue Reading