In August 2020, we reported some good news
about the funding we granted our partner, Read Better Be Better, to extend their home program during quarantine. To prevent reading regression during the COVID-19 school closures, RBBB created and distributed Literacy Kits to all 2nd and 3rd graders at partner schools and additional kits at local organizations. Accessibility to these resources is key during turbulent times. So, when families arrived at school for meal pick-up, they received a kit to take home.
Without the availability of the schools to facilitate in-person sessions, RBBB had no program. But superintendents and teachers from the partner school districts soon began contacting Allen-Etchart and RBBB staff members to discuss adapting the program to the new circumstances. At this point, the organization knew they needed to pivot their programming from “after-school” to “at-home”.
RBBB’s team adjusted the curriculum and capitalized on the program’s uncomplicated framework to transition to a remote format. Read Better Be Better At Home was established by the time schools resumed in the fall. The new iteration pairs a 2nd-4th grade student with an older sibling or another family member in the home.
For six weeks, students partner twice a week for 30-minute sessions. They work through a simplified version of the same curriculum as the after-school program, but they also receive books for their home and have an online library available to them upon request. Additionally, Program Coaches contact caregivers weekly to answer questions, receive updates about student progress, and serve as a resource for additional support. The Fall 2020 semester saw 136 Leaders and 152 Readers participate, and the families’ responses to the program have been overwhelmingly positive.
Thanks to all these innovative changes, the program can positively impact parents and caregivers as well as other children in the home, especially the youngest ones. RBBB is now able to reach the whole continuum of family members. With your support, we helped activate family reading nights and the joy of literacy. These creative solutions are leading to long-needed changes.
Spring 2021 Read Better Be Better At Home Readers and Leaders are off to an excellent start this semester with over 300 students enrolled. In just five weeks, they’ve already read the equivalent of almost 600 books, with many more reading minutes to come.
We are very proud to support the great work of this organization. Their ability to respond nimbly and make improvements that create lasting opportunities for our students is commendable. If you would like your student to participate in RBBB’s free six-week program, click HERE to learn more and sign up.