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PreK-Grade 3 Literacy

Research shows that proficiency in reading by the end of third grade enables students to shift from learning to read to reading to learn, and to master the more complex subject matter they encounter in the fourth-grade curriculum. Most students who fail to reach this critical milestone falter in the later grades and often drop out before earning a high school diploma.

Starting Strong works to increase the percentage of Portland students scoring proficient or above on the beginning of fourth-grade reading assessment tests by focusing on three overarching strategies.

  • Expand access to training and professional development for staff supporting grade-level reading proficiency
  • Increase access to individualized literacy support programs for low-performing students
  • Engage and empower parents to support their child’s academic success

78% of students participating in Starting Strong’s Reading Partners program at Ocean Avenue School in Portland met or exceeded spring literacy benchmarks as assessed by the Fountas and Pinnell Benchmark Reading Assessment.

Specific PreK to 3rd Grade literacy initiatives include:

  • Opening the World of Learning (OWL) curriculum training
  • Reading Partners volunteer tutoring program for first graders
  • Literacy Kits for English Language Learner (ELL) families