The Center for Literacy engages in multiple partnerships with schools, universities, and foundations to promote literacy improvement for students in grades K-12. The following are current activities that illustrate the Center’s focus on building partnerships to achieve common goals in literacy improvement.
The UALR Center for Literacy, the University of Maine Research and Evaluation Center, and 4 university partners (University of Kentucky, National Louis University, Georgia State University, University of Northern Iowa) are engaged in a collaborative study on the K-2 Comprehensive Intervention Model across 12 states. The purposes of the study are to (1) validate the text levels for the Keystone Assessments; (2) investigate the effect of layered interventions using the CIM; (3) investigate the effect of structured reflection on instructional decision making and effectiveness; and (4) demonstrate the capacity to conduct a multi-state research investigation on CIM. Data collection began in January 2013 and will conclude in June 2013. The results will be published in summer 2013. (http://umaine.edu/cre/currentprojects/cimme/)
In 2010, UALR Center for Literacy received a $1.7 million grant through the U.S. Department of Education to expand its Reading Recovery program. The grant is part of a $45.5 million effort by the Department of Education to fund “what works in education” over a five-year period. The “Reading Recovery: Scaling Up What Works” project is a collaboration of 15 institutions of higher education with The Ohio State University as the lead institution and the University of Pennsylvania as the outside evaluator. The study involves two parallel designs – a randomized experiment and a regression discontinuity quasi-experiment, both of which are multi-site with thousands of students as the units of assignment, nested within hundreds of schools. The size and scope of the sample, combined with rigorous multi-site impact evaluation design make this study quite unique. Indicators of variation in program contexts, supports, and components derived from these data are also used to explore potential predictors of variation in program impacts in subsequent statistical analyses of student reading achievement scores. (First Year Summary)
The UALR Center for Literacy received a $400,000 grant from the WRF to support Arkansas schools in implementing a comprehensive literacy model for preventing reading problems in the early grades. The project was designed to close the proficiency gap among children from minority or low-income households by providing these children with K-3 comprehensive literacy interventions that place them on track for grade level proficiency by the end of third grade and subsequently result in high school graduation. The first year’s award ($100,000) was dedicated to increasing Reading Recovery coverage in high-need schools. Additional funds were used to provide intervention teachers with specialized training in K-3 small group interventions and to provide classroom teachers with professional development that focused on teaching struggling readers in the elementary classroom.