Camden Dream CDF Freedom School delivers a proven strategy to lower the high school dropout rate, improve post-secondary education experience and deliver quality academic enrichment. 


Camden Dream Center and the Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) share core mission-critical objectives: that is to serve children and young adults in communities where quality academic enrichment programming is limited, cost-prohibitive, or non-existent. We've adopted a Leave No Child behind approach. 

Camden Dream Center in partnership with Camden School District, Rutgers University and Cisco Networking Academy opened the first Children's Defense Fund Freedom Schools program in Camden, New Jersey.

 


Camden Dream CDF Freedom School is a program that enhances children’s motivation to read and generates positive attitudes toward learning, while connecting the needs of children and families to appropriate resources in their communities. This is a formula to help lower the local high school drop out rate in Camden, NJ. Research tells us that low-income children typically lose 2-3 months of learning during the summer. But 90% of children gain or maintain reading ability during a Children's Defense Fund Freedom School.

We are also a STEAM site, where we integrate science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics for greater impact. 


1000 Atlantic Avenue (Virtua Healthcare Complex), Camden, New Jersey

Children's Defense Fund Freedom Schools Lower high school dropout rate, improve post-secondary education chances and quality academic enrichment. 



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Leave No Child Behind
Literacy Statistics
Low-income children typically lose 2-3 months of learning during the summer. But 90% of children gain or maintain reading ability during Freedom School. 

Literacy is the gateway skill that students need to be successful in school; low literacy levels translate into poor grades, grade repetition, and eventual disengagement from school. Camden Dream CDF Freedom School adopts Leave No Child Behind. 

The INTEGRATED READING CURRICULUM 

To ensure that every child has a head start, the Children’s Defense Fund Freedom Schools maintains that reading is the key that unlocks the door to children’s dreams and unlimited potential. 


The Integrated Reading Curriculum is an activity-oriented curriculum that is used during classroom time with Servant Leader Interns and 10 Camden Dream CDF Freedom School students. During this time, the children are introduced to new books and characters, engaging in group discussions, participating in cooperative-group activities, and learning more about conflict-resolution and social action.



D.E.A.R.Time, is an acronym that stands for Drop Everything And Read. 

D.E.A.R. time is observed by the entire CDF Freedom Schools site.It is a time when students, staff, and visitors select a recreational or resource book from the site library and read silently for 15 minutes.Students are able to select the book of their choice, read freely on the floor,or even read with the Servant Leader Intern.


AFTERNOON ACTIVITIES 

Activities allow the children to continue in educationally enriching activities in a variety of ways. These activities are extensions from the Integrated Reading Curriculum and may engage the students in drama, art, music, dance, or other culturally enriching activities.  At the Camden Dream CDF Freedom School we are a STEAM based site and engage our children in science experiments and projects such as the building of robotics, studying botany and planting seeds, astronomy, computer technology/engineering group work, math, art and musicology.

-Field trips may also serve as an afternoon activity. Afternoon Activities require advanced planning and preparation. All activities must be age appropriate. All trips that the Camden Dream CDF Freedom School has taken reiterates the thematics of STEAM.