Putting reading first
Dallas ISD is taking a future-focused comprehensive approach to ensure students have the foundational reading and writing skills they will need to ensure lifelong success Through its Literacy is Transforming initiative.
The district is embracing four strategies as part of a comprehensive effort to get students reading and writing at grade level to address a 5.8 percentage-point drop from 2019 to 2021 in the number of students who passed the reading portion of the STAAR across all grade levels. Visit www.dallasisd.org/lit to learn more about the initiative.
“We must embrace innovation and research-based practices to do what we can to build our students’ literary skills,” Chief Academic Officer Shannon Trejo said. “And with the pandemic providing additional challenges to students for the past year, we are ready to accelerate student learning when everyone returns to campus for in-person learning in August.”
Dallas ISD is in the initial stages of investing heavily in school libraries over the coming months and years. As part of a partnership with Apple, this library redesign initiative, titled Project R.E.A.D., will see libraries evolve into exciting learning laboratories for students to engage in research, exploration, application, and design.
The district is optimizing the implementation of the Texas Reading Academies, a state legislative requirement, to drive long-term growth and target closing the achievement gap for its Black and Latino students. The Reading Academies equip teachers and administrators with the evidence-based methods that best support the science of teaching reading.
Summer school programming, Summer Breeze, was been redesigned with a strong focus on literacy instruction. Through Novel Engineering, students are reading a book where they will work with peers to create a solution for the problem the character is experiencing in the book.
Foundational and critical reading and writing skills will be built into the curriculum across all content areas, including math and science. This will teach students how to read, write, think and discuss in ways that are particular to those areas.
In addition to these targeted ways to boost student literacy skills, Dallas ISD is committed to investing up to $100 million over two years to mitigate learning loss in all subject areas.