Reading Intervention Recommendations
As more and more of our schools, particularly secondary, turn their attention to responding to student reading needs, we've compiled some guidance to support our school leaders and teachers to make decisions based on site needs and existing resources and structures. In addressing reading gaps, we are in fact interrupting centuries of systemic racism, classism, and inequity. There are few easy answers, nor are recommended solutions particularly economical. Nevertheless, we persist.
In K-5, the most used program is Leveled Literacy Intervention. This program makes sense in the elementary grades because the instructional approach aligns with our district's Balanced Approach to Literacy, specifically the Guided Reading component. Elementary educators typically have the training and experience to manage this program, which requires significant expertise in literacy instruction. Elementary schools can organize their schedules to include this time in addition to the Tier 1, universal instruction that all students receive, so that student access to grade-level content is maintained. The program has also been reviewed by the What Works Clearinghouse, with evidence of positive effects for reading achievement. For those students who need further support in phonics and sight words, teachers are also using SIPPS.
In 6-12, decisions become more complex. As students progress in grades, the range of needs widens, and thus, the array of possible interventions becomes larger. The secondary master schedule also presents challenges because the need for additional reading intervention must be balanced with ensuring students have access to CSU minimum A-G course requirements, which include both core classes and electives. Even more consideration must be taken to support the social-emotional needs and self-perception of adolescents who struggle with reading. Finally, secondary teachers have not typically received the depth of training with reading instruction and assessments required to support students several grades below in reading. Again, we persist. We hope the following resources will support you in making the best decisions for your school, teachers, and students:
- Materials and Master Schedule: Pros and Cons
- Secondary Literacy and Budget Considerations: Before Tier 2
- Leadership Considerations for Secondary Reading Intervention