The Clemson University Reading Recovery Training Center is excited to announce that it is an official partner with 15 other institutions of higher education and lead applicant The Ohio State University in the Investing in Innovation Fund grant, Reading Recovery: Scaling Up What Works. The total grant worth $54.7 million includes $45.6 million from the USDE and a $9.1 million match of private funds. Clemson’s sub-award amount is $3,038,731. The monies will be used to train 3,750 Reading Recovery teachers nationwide ultimately bringing individual instruction to 90,000 struggling readers. These highly trained teachers will also serve an additional 405,000 struggling readers in a small group or classroom setting.
Reading Recovery® is a highly effective short-term one-to-one intervention for the lowest achieving first graders. It is also a professional development model utilizing a three-tiered approach, which includes teachers, teacher leaders (who train teachers), and university trainers (who train teacher leaders). The professional development begins with an intensive academic year of graduate level study and continues in subsequent years with regular collaborative meetings focused on literacy teaching and learning. This year Reading Recovery celebrated 20 years in the state of South Carolina and is now looking forward to the next 20.
As an official partner, Clemson University will train 50 new Reading Recovery teachers each year for the next five years and will continue expanding its use of technology to support teachers in the field. Currently the University Training Center partners with the National Guard’s Virtual Training Classroom (VTC) to provide support to sites located in key geographic areas across South Carolina. By using the VTC the Clemson University Training Center is able to provide a type of blended virtual professional development. The key to this virtual learning is not only the live stream, but also the interactive component offered at each location. As teachers gather after school to view the VTC a teacher leader at each site serves to clarify and answer questions, aid teachers as they debrief, and encourage self-reflection about the implementation of the teaching strategies presented. The Clemson University Training Center is also working with Spartanburg School District 7 this year using Adobe Connect to coach Reading Recovery teachers as they work one-to-one with struggling first grade readers.