The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading Story
The Dorchester County Maryland Campaign
for Grade-Level Reading
Dorchester County, MD has joined a network of over 400 communities across the country that are targeting children birth to third grade to increase their reading proficiency by the time they reach the third grade. Campaign for Grade-Level Reading (CGLR) communities focus on one of the most important predictors of school success and high school graduation—- reading on grade-level by third grade. Joining the CGLR Network provides Dorchester access to cutting edge information, key learning strategies and an array funders, to improve the future of all Dorchester’s children.
The Dorchester CGLR is made possible by grants from the John and Janice Wyatt Foundation (J2W Foundation.) The J2W Foundation is intensely focused on creating equity and leveling the playing field for socially and economically disadvantaged children and youth in our geographic service area. Our focus is on early childhood education through middle school. Our goal is to help children stay engaged and become successful, active citizens in today’s rapidly evolving world.
The Dorchester County Campaign for Grade-Level Reading has a goal to double the number of 3rd graders reading at or above the proficient level in the next 10 years.
The community’s action plan addresses three underlying challenges that can keep young children, especially those from economically challenged families, from learning to read proficiently — school readiness, school attendance and summer learning asa well as after school programs. CGLR Dorchester will reach out to parents and families to seek their involvement in every way to insure this initiative is family and child focused. Local non-profits are already on board including: The Empowerment Center, The YMCA, New Beginnings, Boys and Girls Club, Dorchester Public Schools, Harvesting Hope, and other community based partners.
Community partners and families will be critical to Dorchester County’s CGLR success. Julia Barker, Cambridge Empowerment Center says, “For our after school program, we are having monthly ‘Family Reading Nights’. The children are encouraged to read books and stories to their parents. We feel that parent involvement is crucial to their child's reading success.”
Research shows that being proficient in reading by third grade enables students to shift from learning to read to reading to learn and to master more complex subject matter in the grades that follow. Failure to reach reading mastery leads to a downhill trajectory in a students academic life. CGLR provides communities with a vast library of no cost tools and professional development to serve the families and educators in their community. The Campaign also shares critical information to help communities share “lessons learned” and strategies from leading experts in the field education and philanthropy.