With school out for the summer, I have resigned myself to the fact that the education beat will dry up from time to time over the next few months. Sure there are still the important school board meetings and the like, but the students and teachers are largely gone and so too are many of their stories.

But when I heard about some of the summer programs offered by area school districts, I found some little but lovely stories to help fill my news week.

The Denison Independent School District’s Summer Food Service Program launched last week and aims to provide any young person under the age of 18 with both free breakfasts and free lunches. A single sack lunch might seem like a small contribution, but with parents and adult family members among those who don’t often get the luxury of summer vacation, it means one less meal and expense to worry about.

Having access to meals that are well-balanced and nutritious is also important to students and their families. I will be the first to confess that many of my childhood summers were fueled in large part by hot dogs, hamburgers, chips and frozen sugary treats. Eating healthy foods is not always convenient and rarely is it cheap, so for area families which are economically disadvantaged to have access to free and nutritious meals such as these is hugely beneficial.

Sherman ISD is offering up free food too, but I decided to follow up on one of the district’s different summer resources — sports camps. The camps are open to students in grades 2-12, feature a variety of sports and many are completely free.

Students can easily fall into a pattern of sleeping in and lounging on the couch during the summer months, and though I would have loved to do just that as a middle and high school student, it’s important that kids have the option to stay active. And while the sports camps provide some serious exercise, they can also help reveal the value of teamwork and dedication to young people.

Despite it being summer, I’m glad to hear the work of our area school districts is still going on and making a difference in students’ lives.

Happy birthday Tuesday to Dana Posey and June Ragsdale, both of Sherman; Celia Rhodes of Denison; Albert Ellis of Luella; and Tracey Ertel of Georgetown.