Education Program

Literacy & No Child Left Behind (NCLB)

The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) of 2001, President George W. Bush’s landmark education legislation, recognizes the importance of literacy skills and elevates the issue to a high priority.  Building on the recommendations from the National Reading Panel, NCLB includes two new literacy initiatives: Early Reading First and Reading First, whose missions’ are to enable all students to become successful readers. Additionally, NCLB focuses on family literacy by bolstering the Williams Goodling Even Start Family Literacy program to improve educational opportunities for low-income families. NCLB also focuses attention on increasing access to books with the Improving Literacy Through School Libraries program, Reading is Fundamental-Inexpensive Book Distribution program, and the Summer Reading Achievers Program.

Federal Early Reading First Initiative, Title I, Part B, Subpart 1
“Early Reading First, part of the president's [President George W. Bush] ‘Good Start, Grow Smart’ initiative, is designed to transform existing early education programs into centers of excellence that provide high-quality, early education to young children, especially those from low-income families. The overall purpose of the Early Reading First Program is to prepare young children to enter kindergarten with the necessary language, cognitive, and early reading skills to prevent reading difficulties and ensure school success.”

Federal Reading First Initiative, Title I, Part B, Subpart 2
“Reading First is a focused nationwide effort to enable all students to become successful early readers. Funds are dedicated to help states and local school districts eliminate the reading deficit by establishing high-quality, comprehensive reading instruction in kindergarten through grade 3. Building on a solid foundation of research, the program is designed to select, implement, and provide professional development for teachers using scientifically based reading programs, and to ensure accountability through ongoing, valid and reliable screening, diagnostic, and classroom-based assessment.”

William Goodling Even Start Family Literacy Programs, Title I, Part B, Subpart 3
Even Start is an education program for the nation's low-income families that is designed to improve the academic achievement of young children and their parents, especially in the area of reading. More educated parents read to their young children more consistently and encourage their children to read more to themselves when they are older. Most parents with college degrees read to their children daily before the children begin kindergarten; few children whose parents have only a high school diploma or less benefit from daily reading.Even Start offers promise for helping to break the intergenerational cycle of poverty and low literacy in the nation by combining four core components which make up family literacy: early childhood education; adult literacy (adult basic and secondary-level education and/or instruction for English language learners); parenting education; and interactive literacy activities between parents and their children.”

Improving Literacy Through School Libraries,
Title I, Part B, Subpart 4
The disparity across social class in public libraries is huge with six times as many juvenile library books in upper-income neighborhoods as in black neighborhoods.“The Improving Literacy through School Libraries (LSL) program promotes comprehensive local strategies to improve student reading achievement by improving school library services and resources. School library media centers can contribute to improved student achievement by providing up-to-date instructional materials aligned to the curriculum and instructional practices, collaborating with and supporting teachers, administrators, and parents, and extending their hours of operation beyond the school day.”

Reading Is Fundamental-Inexpensive Book Distribution Program, One survey of Philadelphia-area communities found that in neighborhoods where almost all adults were college-educated, retailers stocked 1,300 children's books per 100 children. In a blue-collar Irish & Eastern European middle-income area, there were 30 children's books per 100 children. In a multi-ethnic area there were 10 books per 100 children. And in a predominately black area, retailers stocked fewer than one book per 100 children.Title V, Part B, Subpart 5
“The Reading Is Fundamental-Inexpensive Book Distribution program awards an annual contract to Reading Is Fundamental, Inc. (RIF) to provide, through aid to local nonprofit groups and volunteer organizations, reading motivation activities. RIF encourages reading both inside and outside of school by allowing youngsters to select books to keep at home.”

21st Century Community Learning Centers, Title IV, Part B
“The 21st CCLC Program is a key component of President Bush's No Child Left Behind Act. It is an opportunity for students and their families to continue to learn new skills and discover new abilities after the school day has ended. The focus of this program is to provide expanded academic enrichment opportunities for children attending low performing schools. Tutorial services and academic enrichment activities are designed to help students meet local and state academic standards in subjects such as reading and math. It is estimated that adult reading scores improve approximately one grade level with 35 to 45 hours of tutoring.In addition, 21st CCLC programs provide youth development activities, drug and violence prevention programs, technology education programs, art, music and recreation programs, counseling and character education to enhance the academic component of the program.”

No Child Left Behind Summer Reading Achievers
“The No Child Left Behind Summer Reading Achievers Program is designed to encourage students in grades K-8 to read during the summer months and help prevent fall-off in reading skills during the vacation. The program is simple. Students who read 10 books over the summer will receive a variety of prizes, including free books and a Summer Reading Achievers certificate.”

The Partnership for Reading
“The Partnership for Reading is a collaborative effort by three federal agencies—the National Institute for Literacy (NIFL), the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), and the U.S. Department of Education—to bring the findings of evidence-based reading research to the educational community, families, and others with an interest in helping all people learn to read well. First established in 2000, the partnership is now authorized by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (P.L. 107-110). The partnership's mission is to disseminate evidence-based research, a focus that makes it substantively different from earlier information dissemination efforts and clearinghouses.”


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