Specialized Literacy Training in Chatham County

Through a generous grant awarded to the Chatham Education Foundation by The Oak Foundation, Chatham Education Foundation will increase the effectiveness of all thirteen kindergarten through eighth grade reading specialists in Chatham County.

This grant will allow each of the thirteen K-8 reading specialists in Chatham County Public Schools to receive the Hill Reading Achievement Program certification by The Hill Center, in Durham, NC.   This certification includes:  Phonics:  Breaking the Code, HillRAP, Eliminating Executive Dysfunction or Understanding Learning Differences, HillWrite” and five certification observations by a Hill Mentor.

This opportunity affords the reading specialists to effectively teach the most struggling readers.  In addition, their knowledge will be shared among peers, so they too can benefit from the Hill Center training.

“Our district is working to provide a comprehensive literacy framework in every classroom. This framework includes the five elements of effective reading instruction: phonics; phonemic awareness; text comprehension; vocabulary; and fluency. We know, however, that some students need individualized intervention and support in literacy instruction beyond what the classroom teacher provides.  This additional training and expertise in literacy instruction for our reading specialist is a wonderful opportunity for all of our schools.  It is exciting to have such a rewarding partnership with the Chatham Education Foundation and the Oak Foundation to support our vision of making literacy a priority for our entire community” says Dr. Amanda Hartness, Chatham County Schools Assistant Superintendent for Academic Services & Instructional Support.

The Oak Foundation supports this grant based on their dedication to learning differences in children.  The Oak Foundation states that as many as 20% of children in the US public schools have learning profiles that do not align with expectations and teaching methodology in mainstream school systems.

The Chatham Education Foundation provides educational experiences and teacher professional development, otherwise unattainable in the current school budget. CEF has four priority areas:  K-3 literacy, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), Technology and Dual Language programs.

Article by: Jaime Detzi

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