Promoting reading success
What can we learn from the experience of an elementary school?
Writing under the headline, “How one California elementary school sees success after overhauling its reading program: More students are on track to reach grade-level reading at Nystrom Elementary, one of 75 schools to receive extra funding after a 2020 legal settlement with the state,” Ali Tadayon told the story about how one elementary school flipped from a balanced literacy approach to reading instruction that placed a greater emphasis on letters and sounds and was able to report improved outcomes for students.
According to Mr. Tadayon’s report, the school not only changed the curriculum it used (from “Units of Study for Teaching Reading English/Language Arts” to “Systematic Instruction in Phonological Awareness, Phonics, and Sight Words,” AKA “SIPPs”), but it also adopted different assessment systems and grouping arrangements, as well as increasing the amount of time devoted to literacy instruction. Before one attributes the success to one or another aspect of what the school is doing, please consider the task of deconstructing the stew.