UALR’s Scale-Up of Reading Recovery Receives Good News for Struggling Readers and Their Schools

Another study about Reading Recovery’s effectiveness, this one funded by the Ohio State University’s i3 scale up grant and conducted completely independently, has been added to the What Works Clearinghouse (WWC). The independent research, conducted on the nationwide scale-up of Reading Recovery by the Consortium for Policy Research in Education (CPRE), was the first in a three-part series to present results of the 5-year $45.6 million grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Investing in Innovation (i3) Fund. The study met the WWC’s group design standards “without reservation”; the highest design rating that the WWC assesses.

UALR is one of 19 universities across the nation partnering with Ohio State to scale up Reading Recovery across the country by offering graduate level credit to train 3,690 additional teachers in Reading Recovery.

“The study’s authors found, and the WWC confirmed, that Reading Recovery had a significant impact on general reading achievement of struggling readers in first grade.” WWC also confirmed positive impacts on two sub-tests, general reading achievement and reading comprehension.

Across the U.S., a total of 628 schools participated in a scale-up of Reading Recovery® in the second year of the grant. Of those, 209 were randomly selected to participate in the randomized controlled trial in the first year of the study. “UALR is proud to be part of this large, independent research study on Reading Recovery. We would also like to recognize the schools and districts that are part of our Reading Recovery network in Arkansas, Missouri, Tennessee, Indiana, Wyoming, and Washington,” said Dr. Linda Dorn, Director of the Center for Literacy at UALR.

Teacher leaders affiliated with the UALR Training Center trained a total of 208 teachers in 144 schools in 87 districts using i3 funds to pay for the training and materials. “We know that the teachers and administrators have seen remarkable changes in student learning over Reading Recovery’s short-term intervention. We also know that today’s educators increasingly rely on strong experimental research to guide decision-making,” said Dr. Janet Behrend, Reading Recovery trainer at UALR. “The recent WWC review confirms Reading Recovery’s positive impact on student learning.”

About this single-study research
The full report and an Executive Summary are available at CPRE member institutions are the University of Pennsylvania, Teachers College Columbia University, Harvard University, Stanford University, University of Michigan, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Northwestern University. The evaluation report is a collaborative publication between CPRE and the University of Delaware Center for Research in Education & Social Policy (CRESP).

About the i3 scale-up grant
In October 2010, the USDE awarded a 5-year, $45.6 million, Investing in Innovation (i3) grant to The Ohio State University. An additional $10.1 million required private sector match was also raised to support Reading Recovery training across the United States. All 19 Reading Recovery university training centers in the U.S. are participating in the project. These funds are supporting year-long Reading Recovery graduate level training for more than 3,690 teachers who will utilize their expertise to reach nearly half a million children by 2015, the final year of the grant

Although all U.S. schools are eligible for professional development funding provided by the i3 grant, particular priority was given to very low-performing schools, schools in rural areas, and schools with high populations of English Language learners.

Download the WWC Review of the Report “Evaluation of the i3 Scale-up of Reading Recovery Year One Report, 2011-2012”

Download the WWC 2013 Report on Reading Recovery Research

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