AJC highlights Gov. Deal's Reading Mentor Program

December 27, 2012

The AJC released an article highlighting Gov. Deal's Reading Mentor Program that GOSA manages. The goal of the $1.6 million initiative is to improve the percentage of children reading at grade level by the end of third grade.  Working with teams of pre-K through third grade teachers in the state’s most challenged schools in reading proficiency, the reading instruction mentors provide coaching to principals and teachers, refine or establish comprehensive early literacy plans, provide coaching and lesson modeling on explicit and systematic classroom reading instruction, and assist educators with implementing and using meaningful progress monitoring and diagnostic assessments.

The article highlights the program's work at Edmonds Elementary in Clayton County, one of 43 schools around that state where GOSA has placed a reading mentor. The goal at Edmonds is to have 95 percent of students reading on grade level by the end of the school year.

Across the state, the socio-economic and academic backgrounds of the districts and schools the Reading Instruction Mentors serve are varied, as is the level of priority they place on third grade reading proficiency.  While the reading instruction mentors serve some high-capacity urban districts and schools, for other districts, this will be the first time an individual dedicated to reading and literacy has been placed in their building.  Additionally, many education reform initiatives have been rolled out during the 2012-2013 school year, from the Georgia Common Core Performance Standards, to the Teacher Keys Evaluation System in the state’s 26 Race to the Top and 15 partner districts, to the state’s new accountability system approved as our “No Child Left Behind” waiver.  As a result, the Reading Instruction Mentors have partnered with districts to provide the in-depth professional development needed for the teachers and principals in the selected schools.

To access the full AJC article, click here.