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October 17, 2016

Reading Partners announces strong student reading progress and plans for 2016-17 school year

For Immediate Release

Contact: Michael Todd, National Director of Marketing & Communications, Reading Partners
(415) 225-9139  |  michael.todd@readingpartners.org

 The volunteer-led tutoring nonprofit is among a select group of interventions being highlighted at the White House My Brother’s Keeper What Works Showcase

(Oakland, CA) October 17, 2016 — Reading Partners is a national nonprofit organization that collaborates with local public schools and mobilizes community volunteers to provide students in under-resourced schools with the proven, individualized reading support they need to read at grade level by fourth grade.

Reading Partners transforms a dedicated space into a reading center, complete with a library and teaching tools managed by a full-time AmeriCorps member or staff member. Reading Partners collaborates with teachers and principals to identify students reading behind grade level, and provides them with personalized literacy instruction.

2015-16 Results

Reading Partners prides itself on running a program that is both highly effective and transparent. In that spirit, the nonprofit organization issues annual impact reports spotlighting national-level performance as well as performance results in all 14 of its regions across the country. The impact reports for the 2015-16 school year have recently been posted on readingpartners.org and include the following highlights and many more.

  • On a national level:
    • More than four of five of Reading Partners’ nearly 11,000 students met or exceeded their primary end-of-year literacy growth goal and nearly nine of 10 of the program’s youngest students (those in Kindergarten through 2nd grade) mastered key foundational reading skills needed to read at grade level.
    • Based on survey responses, 92% of principals report improved school-wide reading progress, 98% of teachers report Reading Partners is valuable to their school and 96% of volunteers were satisfied with their experience.
    • Learn more about Reading Partners’ national impact results here.

“Reading is the foundation for all future learning, so our mission at Reading Partners is to work in collaboration with communities to help children in under-resourced schools develop the reading skills and a clear passion for reading that will help lead to success in school and in life, said Jessica Vibberts, Interim CEO of Reading Partners. “The results shared in our national and regional impact reports clearly demonstrate that our collaborative community driven approach is working and students are benefitting from the collective efforts of our staff and AmeriCorps members, our invaluable volunteers, our community partners and the many other supporters of our work and mission.”

More Volunteers Needed in the 2016-17 School Year

According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress, in 2015, only 21 percent of low-income students nationwide, and 36 percent of students overall, are reading proficiently by the fourth grade. This means that nearly nine million low-income elementary school students are still learning to read when they should instead be reading to learn. Without developing the reading skills needed to read on grade level, kids won’t have an equitable chance to succeed in school or in life. In fact, students who can’t read by fourth grade are four times more likely to drop out of school or not earn a high school diploma.

In the 2016-17 school year, Reading Partners aims to match over 14,500 community volunteers with more than 11,000 struggling readers nationally. By tutoring a student one-on-one for as little as an hour a week, volunteers can make an impact that can quite literally alter the course of a child’s educational experience and life.

Lindsay, a second-year Reading Partners tutor in Sacramento, tutors early on Monday mornings. As she says, “not just because it’s convenient for my schedule, but it’s an excellent way to brighten up my day and the whole week! I love watching how students get excited about the different components of reading.”

Across the country in Baltimore, Colleen, a fourth-year Reading Partners volunteer tutor states, “I now have a strong belief in the power of education to change lives because I see it happening every week at Reading Partners.”

The impressive student results highlighted above and in the corresponding impact reports would not be possible without the generous participation of thousands of community volunteers. To become a volunteer with Reading Partners, please visit readingpartners.org/volunteer today.

Reading Partners Program to Be Highlighted on 10/17 at the White House My Brother’s Keeper What Works Showcase

Reading Partners is honored to be among a select group of organizations from across the country invited to highlight our program’s evidence of success at the “White House My Brother’s Keeper What Works Showcase” on Monday, October 17. The objective of the interactive science-fair-style event is to showcase a broad range of program models that have demonstrated evidence of impact across My Brother’s Keeper’s cradle-to-college-and-career-goals. Reading Partners was selected for this event because the organization has shown a promising level of evidence as an intervention helping students achieve the critical milestone of reading at grade level by third grade. The event will be broadcast via livestream on Monday, October 17 from 9:30 am – 12:15 pm ET: https://www.whitehouse.gov/live.

About Reading Partners

Reading Partners empowers students to succeed in reading and in life by engaging community volunteers to provide one-on-one tutoring. The national nonprofit organization will provideproven, individualized literacy tutoring to more than 11,000 elementary school students in under-resourced schools across ten states and the District of Columbia in the 2016-17 school year. Visitreadingpartners.org, or connect with us on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook, to learn more.

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