We live in a competitive global economy driven by knowledge and information. Nowhere is this more evident than in Silicon Valley, the heart of the technology industry. More than ever, all students need—and deserve—the opportunity to receive a high-quality education that prepares them to succeed in college and career. However, many students aren’t receiving the individualized attention they need to build a strong foundation of essential reading skills.
Despite Silicon Valley’s booming job market and influx of international talent, disparities in literacy achievement are growing. Only 59 percent of third graders in Santa Clara County and 55 percent of third graders in neighboring San Mateo County read at a proficient or advanced level, according to the Annie E. Casey Foundation. In Silicon Valley, where those without a high school degree will earn a median income below the federal poverty line, the stakes for learning to read are high.
Reading Partners was founded in the Silicon Valley in 1999. Since then, Reading Partners has been successfully providing volunteer-led, one-on-one literacy tutoring to K-5 students in three counties across Silicon Valley. We currently operate reading centers in twenty schools in Sunnyvale, San Jose, Redwood City, Hayward, San Mateo, Mountain View, and Atherton.
Facing a school year of uncertainty due to COVID-19 in 2020-21, Reading Partners collaborated with teachers and school leaders to meet students’ learning needs, including creating an innovative online tutoring program that can be used to support students when in-person tutoring is not an option. Reading Partners will also continue to invest in family engagement programs and race equity, diversity, and inclusion training for volunteers, staff, and AmeriCorps members to ensure that we are thoroughly supporting students and communities as we emerge from the pandemic and well into the future.
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Milpitas, CA 95035