Right to Read-Maryland is a coalition of educators and organizations who have the common goal of improving teacher preparation as it specifically relates to reading skills acquisition for all. According to the 2013 report of the National Assessment of Educational Progress, 62% percent of 12th graders in the United States read below the level of “Proficient”. Students who read below the level of “Proficient” are identified by:
an inability to answer the most rudimentary questions concerning the text
labored and inaccurate decoding
a partial understanding of the written material, at best
a limited performance or one that is severely lacking
The Nation’s Report Card serves as a clear indication that reading instruction in American educational institutions is problematic. This is directly related to the nature and structure of American educational institutions where inadequate instruction in phonemic awareness, phonics, reading comprehension strategies, and basic spelling rules leads to the development of inadequate “code breaking” skills. The lack of English “code breaking” skills translates into the creation of a disability in basic reading skills, and reading skills are the foundation of all other learning.
Recent research indicates that disability in basic reading skills is independent of any achievement capacity and that deficits can be identified in late kindergarten and first grade using inexpensive, straightforward testing protocol. Additionally, deficits in reading can be remediated using an explicit, systematic, and forensic approach to mastering the English language. Unfortunately, teachers are not equipped with this information and receive little formal training, either on the university level or beyond, in the development of reading skills. As a result, many teachers are underprepared to teach the science of reading.
The goal of The Right to Read-Maryland Coalition is to ensure that all future Elementary Education instructors receive an undergraduate education that includes the essential components of phonemic awareness, phonics, reading comprehension strategies, and basic spelling rules, and that current Elementary Education teachers receive professional development that includes the same.
Inspired by “The Right to Read and the Responsibility to Teach”, by G. Reid Lyon, Ph.D., 2002.
Although the organizations identified below share a common goal with Right to Read-Maryland, the coalition, itself, does not necessarily reflect the individual mission of each organization. For more information about the participating member groups, please click on the logos below to consult their websites.