Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE) announced ten awards under a special competition through the Smaller Learning Communities program that will serve as the national research evaluation of supplemental reading programs in freshman academies. Through the competition, which the department has dubbed “Enhanced Reading Opportunities” (ERO), OVAE awarded grants to ten school districts that applied on behalf of two to four large public high schools that are implementing freshman academies.
ERO will test the effectiveness of two supplemental literacy interventions targeted to “striving ninth-grade readers,” or students with reading comprehension skills that are two to four years below grade level and who are enrolled in freshman academies. The interventions will include direct classroom instruction, reading materials that are targeted to adolescents, ongoing student assessments, and professional development for teachers.
A panel of literacy experts from across the country selected the two supplemental literacy programs that will be evaluated: Reading Apprenticeship for Academic Literacy, developed and supported by WestEd; and the Strategic Instruction Model, developed and supported by the Center for Research on Learning at the University of Kansas.
Grant recipients and award amounts are as follows:
|School District||Award Amount|
|Atlanta Public Schools, Ga.Anne Arundel County Public Schools, Md.Omaha Public Schools, Neb.
Greece Central/Rochester City School District, N.Y.
Syracuse City School District, N.Y.
Richland County School District, S.C.
Houston Independent School District, Tex.
San Antonio Independent School District, Tex.
Ogden City School District, Utah
Norfolk Public Schools, Va.
For more information and project abstracts for each grantee, visit here.
|Striving Readers UpdateThe U.S. Department of Education expects to release the Federal Register Notice inviting applicants for new awards for the Striving Readers fiscal year 2005 grant in early August 2005.
When the application becomes available, the Alliance for Excellent Education will send an Alliance Alert with further information via email. Individuals who receive Straight A’s in print form who want to make sure they get the alert should email their name and email address firstname.lastname@example.org with “Alliance Alert” in the subject line.
In the meantime, individuals with any questions on the Striving Readers program should call the department’s Striving Readers hotline at 202-205-6272 or email the department at StrivingReaders@ed.gov.
With schools around the country out for summer, the Alliance newsletter-although not the Alliance staff-will be taking a summer vacation during the month of August.
The next issue of Straight A’s: Public Education Policy and Progress will be dated September 6.