Alabama Reading Initiative; good news

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 29, 2000

Last spring, The Advocate reported the fact that the Butler County Board of Education received a competitive Reading Excellence grant of almost

$200,000 to be used to create a "literacy demonstration site" for the Alabama Reading Initiative. Both W.O. Parmer and R.L. Austin elementary schools were chosen to be among only 241 schools state-wide to become demonstration sites, and the implimentation of the initiative can only be beneficial to the students.

The Reading initiative has five criteria for participating schools: setting a 100 percent literacy goal; a 10 day faculty training program seeking to train 85 percent of the faculty members; adjusting reading instruction to reflect research-based practices; modeling effective reading instruction for other schools; and undergoing outside evaluation.

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Teachers from both of our area elementary schools have been undergoing their training under this program for the last couple of weeks, and the commitment these educators are showing to their students will be rewarded through improved reading skill in their students.

Reading is the first step to education, and as our schools work to continue to improve the educational opportunities they offer, it is important for the community to recognize their accomplishments.