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Addressing the literacy crisis through adaptive technology
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Addressing the literacy crisis through adaptive technology

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  • 1. The Crisis As we all know, education in the the United States is failing too many students.The implications for opportunity and social mobility are devastating: • Despite gains over the past decade, the US ranks 22nd in high school completion rates in the industrialized world. • High school dropouts forfeit their earning potential, are more likely to depend on government programs, and are more likely to end up in jail – personal crises that cost the country an estimated $180 billion a year. • Those who do make it to college are increasingly unprepared – the US now has the highest college dropout rate of any industrialized nation. Sources: America’s Promise Alliance,“Building a Grad Nation”(March 2013); OECD,“Educational Indicators at a Glance”(September 2012); Henry Levin and Cecelia Rouse, “The True Cost of High School Dropouts”(NYT 1/25/2012); Harvard Graduate School of Education, "Pathways to Prosperity: Meeting the Challenge of Preparing Young Americans for the 21st Century" (February 2011) 2
  • 2. The Crisis: Literacy Education Today Less well known – our failure to provide effective literacy instruction is at the root of our educational failure: • Students who are reading below grade level by the end of third grade are much more likely to drop out than their peers. • Students’literacy deficits have a ripple effect, undermining performance across disciplines. Students who lack comprehension skills perform below their potential in all core subjects. • Grade 12 textbooks are now four grades below college-level reading – a deficit that college-based remedial programs struggle to fill. 3 Sources: The Annie E Casey Foundation,“Early Warning: Why Reading By the End of Third Grade Matters”(2010); Marilyn Jager Adams,“The Challenge of Advanced Texts: The Interdependence of Reading and Learning”in Reading More, Reading Better (Guilford Publications, 2009); Common Core State Standards,“CCSS for English Language Arts & Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects - Appendix A: Research Supporting Key Elements of the Standards”(2010)
  • 3. Literacy Education Today Perpetuates Social Injustice The state of literacy instruction has the biggest impact on historically underserved students. Reading Performance Black Latino White 40% 17%16% 34% 32%32% 26% 51%52% Source: National Center for Education Statistics, NAEP Data Explorer, http://nces.ed.gov/ nationsreportcard/nde, cited in Whitney Tilson,“A Right Denied.”2009 data, 4 • Until the end of 3rd grade, most children are learning to read. Beginning in 4th grade, they are reading to learn. • Up to half of the printed 4th grade curriculum is incomprehensible to students who read below that grade level. Below Basic Basic Proficient / Advanced
  • 4. Literacy Education Today Undermines Equity All Students Graduate High School Start College Earn 4 Yr Degree 9% 41% 71% 100% 77% 81% 92% 100% Top Income Quartile Bottom Income Quartile The vast majority of students in the bottom income quartile forfeit the social mobility and opportunity that come with a four-year college degree. 5
  • 5. Ample research has shown which strategies work to ensure that students from historically underprivileged and low-income families reach their full potential as readers and writers. 2 3 4 1 More time reading a range of challenging texts Writing to boost comprehension Timely feedback and collaboration High expectations for students and for teachers 6 Children need time to read deeply and widely, building comprehension skills, domain knowledge and vocabulary Research includes: Nelson et al., 2011; Dobbie & Fryer, 2011 Children learn to read faster and more strategically through note- taking, analyzing and summarizing, and answering text- dependent questions. Meta-data research includes: Graham & Hebert, 2011; Graham, McKeown, et al., 2012 The Common Core has officially raised the bar; literacy benchmarking and progress monitoring are needed to hold teachers and leaders accountable. Research includes: Weinstein 2002; Rubie-Davies, 2007; Angrist, Pathak et al., 2011 Students move toward mastery more quickly through rapid, data- driven teacher guidance and peer-to-peer engagement. Research includes: Yeh, 2011; Seifried et al., 2012; Graham et al., 2012; Allen et al. 2011 We Know How to Accelerate Literacy
  • 6. 7 LightSail Disrupts Literacy Education Today LightSail powers literacy by combining the high standards of the Common Core with research-based reading and writing strategies – and putting them all at students’ and teachers’ fingertips: • A personalized, Common Core-aligned library stocked with multiple genres of great writing that responds to a student’s interests and growing comprehension • An interactive eReader with embedded MetaMetrics’Lexile assessments – the most reliable and rapid measure of comprehension – and Common Core thinking tools • Writing tools that support students as they learn to create Common Core-level evidence-based arguments • A social networking platform facilitating rapid, differentiated teacher feedback and classroom collaboration • Real-time actionable data on students’reading habits for teachers, school leaders, CMOs and districts