A word from Dr. Kathy Stewart, director of Texas Reading First:
Reading First is without a doubt, the most focused, intense intervention program in the history of education. Teachers are more empowered to make critical decisions about classroom instruction. They are now better able to analyze core and intervention programs to better meet the needs of each and every child. Our main goal in Reading First at the state level is to support those efforts through professional development and technical assistance.
What is Reading First? When you assess a child in reading, use that data to build your instructional plan for that specific child, monitor the child's progress frequently, and continue to customize instruction based on ongoing data, the results can be astounding. THAT is Reading First. Reading First allows more time for uninterrupted reading instruction, expects immediate intervention at the first sign of a struggling reader, supports ongoing assessment, and expects all materials be scientifically reading researched based.
Congratulations to our teachers, local campus coaches, Reading First directors, curriculum leaders, principals, superintendents, state leaders, and all educators that play a role in this most important initiative. It is by far the most important thing we will ever do for our children - giving them the gift of reading by putting reading first.
Kathy Stewart, Ph.D.
Director, Texas Reading First
Texas Education Agency