Strategies

VISION: All students in New Orleans read at grade-level by the end of third grade.

Third Grade Reading Proficiency

Current State

Currently, only 31% New Orleans third graders are reading on grade level. Students who are low-income are nearly 40% less likely to be reading on grade-level by the end of third grade than their more affluent peers in New Orleans.

Goal

The New Orleans Campaign for Grade-Level Reading is working to close this achievement gap. Our goal is for 80% of low income students in New Orleans to be reading on grade level by the end of third grade by 2027.

Strategies

Children who will be in third grade in 2027 have not yet been born. What supports will our community have in place for them to make sure they succeed?

The Campaign is based on the National Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, which has conducted extensive research over the past decade to examine the key drivers of third grade reading success: school readiness, frequent attendance, and summer learning.

Using this research-based framework, the New Orleans Campaign for Grade-Level Reading has outlined the following goals and strategies:

School Readiness

Current State

According to data collected by the Orleans Public Education Network using the Early Development Instrument, only 8% of New Orleans children enter kindergarten developmentally “very ready” physically, emotionally, socially and cognitively. Research continues to show the positive long-term impacts of high-quality early care and education, particularly for low-income children. Despite the increasing cost of childcare, less than 16% of low-income Orleans Parish children birth through age three have access to a publicly-funded child care seat.

Goal

By 2024, 80% of New Orleans children will enter kindergarten ready for success.

Strategies

To reach this goal, the New Orleans Campaign for Grade-Level Reading has outlined the following strategies:
  1. Better support and increase family participation in the social emotional and literacy development of children.
  2. Increase the number of quality early care and education seats to better meet the need for high-quality early care and education for children, birth through age three.
  3. Advocate for the widespread use of a developmentally-appropriate universal kindergarten readiness assessment that is accessible, understandable and supports parents and educators in helping young children meet key development milestones.

Attendance

Current State

More than one-fifth of students who attend public elementary schools in New Orleans miss 10% or more of the school year and are considered chronically absent. Children who are chronically absent miss valuable learning time. They often face unaddressed health needs, transportation barriers, unstable parental employment and/or housing, and other challenges that prevent them from attending school regularly.

Goal

By 2024, fewer than 10% of public school students in pre-kindergarten through third grade in New Orleans will be chronically absent.

Strategies

To reach this goal, the New Orleans Campaign for Grade-Level Reading has outlined the following strategies:
  1. Establish and support consistent early warning and intervention systems across schools to prevent chronic absence using best practices locally and from other communities.
  2. Increasing access to health screenings and services in elementary schools.
  3. Advocating for policy change to incentivize schools to address chronic absence.
  4. Helping to address barriers facing the families of chronically late and absent students.

Summer Learning

Current State

More than 2,000 New Orleans children between the ages of 4 and 8, who are living in poverty do not have access to an affordable high-quality summer program. By the time they enter the fourth grade, national research shows low-income students can lose more than two years of learning compared to their middle class peers due to summer learning loss if they do not participate in a quality summer learning program.

Goal

By 2024, 2,000 more low-income children, ages 4-8, will participate in affordable, high-quality, literacy-rich summer programming.

Strategies

To reach this goal, the New Orleans Campaign for Grade-Level Reading has outlined the following strategies:
  1. Increase points of access to literacy for all children during the summer months by working with existing networks of summer programs to improve quality and literacy access.
  2. Create more high-quality, literacy-rich summer programming seats for low-income children across programs with increased public and private funding.
  3. Support and engage parents in helping prevent summer learning loss by collecting and disseminating information on available summer learning opportunities.