In November, the California Department of Education (CDE) was awarded a $37.5 million federal Comprehensive Literacy State Development grant which will allow for the expansion of current literacy efforts statewide over the next five years.
“Many of the students who are struggling with reading comprehension or are not reading at grade level are our most vulnerable students—economically disadvantaged students, English language learners, students with disabilities, and students in rural communities,” said California superintendent of public instruction Tony Thurmond. “This grant will allow us to promote and support equitable access to high-quality literacy instruction that will benefit not only our high-need students but all of our students from pre-K to high school.”
The CDE is partnering with WestEd, the Region 15 Comprehensive Center, the California County Superintendents Educational Services Association, First 5, and the California Subject Matter Projects to carry out the grant’s three objectives:
Build state capacity to support literacy instruction.
Develop and implement a comprehensive state literacy plan.
Build local capacity to establish, align, and implement literacy initiatives.
In addition to the grant partners, the CDE will establish new sustainable partnerships with local educational agencies, institutions of higher education, and early childhood agencies to coordinate statewide professional learning and will disseminate a comprehensive statewide literacy needs assessment to local educational agencies by December 2019, which will provide vital information to assist in the development of the state literacy plan.