Scholastic Launches iReAch(TM), A State-of-the-Art Internet Assessment Tool

Program Uses Critically-Acclaimed Books and Standards-Aligned Assessments

To Improve Reading Skills of Students in Grades 2-8



Serves as an Indicator of How Students Will Perform on State and National

Tests and Directly Correlates to Skills Measured in Standardized Tests and All

Statewide Assessments of Curriculum Frameworks



Apr 30, 2001, 01:00 ET from Scholastic

    NEW YORK, April 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Scholastic (Nasdaq:   SCHL) the global
 children's publishing and media company, today announced the launch of
 iReAch(TM), a powerful new Internet-delivered, reading assessment program to
 help build reading comprehension and vocabulary skills and prepare students in
 grades 2-8 for state and national standardized testing. Using this literature-
 based assessment program, educators can monitor individual performance and
 receive instructional support materials that directly address student reading
 needs.
     iReAch uses critically-acclaimed books and standards-aligned assessments
 to improve reading skills and prepare students for standardized tests by
 identifying reading weaknesses, enabling educators to implement individualized
 instruction and support in needed skill areas. The announcement was made by
 Harry Barfoot, Vice President and General Manager, Scholastic Educational
 Publishing. The program will be unveiled on April 30, 2001 at the 46th Annual
 International Reading Conference in New Orleans.
     iReAch reports inform school districts, administrators, educators and even
 parents about how students are performing on every tested  reading and
 vocabulary skill and can be used as an indicator of how students will score on
 grade-level standardized tests. The program directly correlates to skills
 measured in five major standardized tests and every statewide assessment of
 curriculum framework. Delivered through a web-based subscription service
 available at http://www.scholastic.com/ireach, the program is flexible to use,
 and can be accessed within the classroom, library/media center, or home
 setting through the Internet.  Comprehensive management reports can be
 generated to instruct, inform and guide student reading progress.
     "Teachers are feeling the growing pressures of accountability due to
 increased emphasis on national and state testing," said Harry Barfoot. "They
 need tools to identify those students who will be helped by targeted reading
 lesson plans. iReAch provides immediate feedback on how students are
 performing, as well as a critical preview of how they might perform on
 national tests, so that educators can build instruction around students'
 weakest skills," continued Barfoot. "iReAch provides an effective tool for
 schools and districts in their efforts to close the reading achievement gap."
 
     How iReAch works:
     Students read full-length books chosen from hundreds of best-loved and
 award-winning titles and then take multiple choice tests online based at their
 grade level. The program directly addresses and evaluates 39 critical
 comprehension and vocabulary skills providing teachers with immediate
 assessment of student progress, as well as extension lessons to further guide
 skills instruction in the classroom.
     "In addition, data from QED suggests that nearly of all schools have
 Internet access with an increasing percentage of classrooms wired as well.
 School districts continue to look for high quality content delivered via the
 Internet," said Barfoot.  "What a wonderful way to combine quality literature
 with technology that supports reading skills development for students in
 Grades 2-8."
 
      Reports Provide Indicators of National Standardized Test Performance
 
     iReAch offers immediate scoring and evaluative reports that serve as an
 indicator of how students are likely to perform on standardized tests. The
 program also can provide schools and district administrators an overview of
 how well schools are doing to increase student reading achievement. iReAch can
 produce individual, group, class, grade level, and school-wide progress
 reports.
 
      iReAch innovative features:
      -- Student comprehension and vocabulary assessment is determined with
         authentic literature, through use of excerpts from a wide variety of
         award-winning children's books.
 
      -- Two forms of the test are available for each book title.
 
      -- Test questions have been correlated to the five major standardized
         tests including Metropolitan Achievement Test (MAT), California
         Achievement Test (CAT), Stanford Achievement Test (SAT), Iowa Test of
         Basic Skills (ITBS), and the CTBS Terra Nova, and the New Standards
         (NS) developed by the National Center for Education and the Economy
         and the University of Pittsburgh. In addition, the test questions are
         correlated to every statewide assessment of reading curriculum
         framework.
 
      -- Optional open-ended questions call for short-answer response and also
         assess target skills. These questions are scored online using a
         5 point system for content, grammar, usage and mechanics, and
         spelling.
 
      -- Optional writing prompts may be assessed as Novice, Apprentice or
         Proficient. Rubrics to evaluate writing prompt responses can be
         assessed for each mode of writing: informative, expressive, and
         persuasive.
 
      -- Individual student data is used to make book recommendations to help
         with weakest skills and reinforce specific vocabulary and
         comprehension proficiency.
 
      -- Immediate scoring and evaluative reports are provided.
 
      -- Assessment format of the program helps to familiarize students with
         the structure of state and national tests, and helps to give students
         the confidence needed to do well.
 
      -- Professionally developed skills lessons offer skills definitions, key
         teaching points and activities on 39 comprehension and vocabulary
         skills.
 
     The limited-time twelve-month subscription price for the program is
 $99 for a teacher license accommodating 40 students, $349 for a school site
 license for 200 students, and $79 for 50 student site license extensions. For
 more information on iReAch please call 1-877-268-6871.
     Scholastic take pride in its 80-year history of serving the reading needs
 of K-8 educators and students. The company focuses its educational publishing
 efforts on its fast-growing research-based reading improvement instructional
 materials consisting of intervention, technology, phonics, early childhood,
 extended learning and summer school programs, which help students overcome
 reading problems and achieve higher test scores. Scholastic's reading
 improvement programs hold market leadership positions with Read 180(TM),
 Scholastic Read XL(TM) and WiggleWorks(R), and the introduction of its
 effective Scholastic Phonics Reading(TM), Scholastic Reading Counts(TM) and
 Building Language for Literacy(TM) programs.  Scholastic has a significant
 long-term educational presence in schools with supplementary materials such as
 classroom magazines, paperback libraries, and professional books for teachers,
 Grolier nonfiction children's books for libraries, as well as core curriculum
 reading improvement products.
     Scholastic is the world's largest publisher and distributor of children's
 books.  A global children's publishing and media company serving the needs of
 parents, teachers, and children, Scholastic provides proprietary book and
 software distribution through school book clubs, school book fairs and to
 classrooms, as well as through the retail trade.  Since 1920, Scholastic has
 created quality educational materials for schools and has expanded its reach
 to include the distribution of books, software, toys, online learning services
 and television programming directly to the home.  Scholastic recently acquired
 Grolier, the leading print and online publisher of children's reference
 materials and the leader in children's direct to home book clubs.
 Internationally, Scholastic operates wholly owned companies in Argentina,
 Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand,
 The Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and the United Kingdom. The U.S.
 Scholastic web site http://www.scholastic.com is a leading provider of
 educational services online for parents, teachers and children.
 
                     MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT -  Click Here
                http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X31529202
 
 

SOURCE Scholastic
    NEW YORK, April 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Scholastic (Nasdaq:   SCHL) the global
 children's publishing and media company, today announced the launch of
 iReAch(TM), a powerful new Internet-delivered, reading assessment program to
 help build reading comprehension and vocabulary skills and prepare students in
 grades 2-8 for state and national standardized testing. Using this literature-
 based assessment program, educators can monitor individual performance and
 receive instructional support materials that directly address student reading
 needs.
     iReAch uses critically-acclaimed books and standards-aligned assessments
 to improve reading skills and prepare students for standardized tests by
 identifying reading weaknesses, enabling educators to implement individualized
 instruction and support in needed skill areas. The announcement was made by
 Harry Barfoot, Vice President and General Manager, Scholastic Educational
 Publishing. The program will be unveiled on April 30, 2001 at the 46th Annual
 International Reading Conference in New Orleans.
     iReAch reports inform school districts, administrators, educators and even
 parents about how students are performing on every tested  reading and
 vocabulary skill and can be used as an indicator of how students will score on
 grade-level standardized tests. The program directly correlates to skills
 measured in five major standardized tests and every statewide assessment of
 curriculum framework. Delivered through a web-based subscription service
 available at http://www.scholastic.com/ireach, the program is flexible to use,
 and can be accessed within the classroom, library/media center, or home
 setting through the Internet.  Comprehensive management reports can be
 generated to instruct, inform and guide student reading progress.
     "Teachers are feeling the growing pressures of accountability due to
 increased emphasis on national and state testing," said Harry Barfoot. "They
 need tools to identify those students who will be helped by targeted reading
 lesson plans. iReAch provides immediate feedback on how students are
 performing, as well as a critical preview of how they might perform on
 national tests, so that educators can build instruction around students'
 weakest skills," continued Barfoot. "iReAch provides an effective tool for
 schools and districts in their efforts to close the reading achievement gap."
 
     How iReAch works:
     Students read full-length books chosen from hundreds of best-loved and
 award-winning titles and then take multiple choice tests online based at their
 grade level. The program directly addresses and evaluates 39 critical
 comprehension and vocabulary skills providing teachers with immediate
 assessment of student progress, as well as extension lessons to further guide
 skills instruction in the classroom.
     "In addition, data from QED suggests that nearly of all schools have
 Internet access with an increasing percentage of classrooms wired as well.
 School districts continue to look for high quality content delivered via the
 Internet," said Barfoot.  "What a wonderful way to combine quality literature
 with technology that supports reading skills development for students in
 Grades 2-8."
 
      Reports Provide Indicators of National Standardized Test Performance
 
     iReAch offers immediate scoring and evaluative reports that serve as an
 indicator of how students are likely to perform on standardized tests. The
 program also can provide schools and district administrators an overview of
 how well schools are doing to increase student reading achievement. iReAch can
 produce individual, group, class, grade level, and school-wide progress
 reports.
 
      iReAch innovative features:
      -- Student comprehension and vocabulary assessment is determined with
         authentic literature, through use of excerpts from a wide variety of
         award-winning children's books.
 
      -- Two forms of the test are available for each book title.
 
      -- Test questions have been correlated to the five major standardized
         tests including Metropolitan Achievement Test (MAT), California
         Achievement Test (CAT), Stanford Achievement Test (SAT), Iowa Test of
         Basic Skills (ITBS), and the CTBS Terra Nova, and the New Standards
         (NS) developed by the National Center for Education and the Economy
         and the University of Pittsburgh. In addition, the test questions are
         correlated to every statewide assessment of reading curriculum
         framework.
 
      -- Optional open-ended questions call for short-answer response and also
         assess target skills. These questions are scored online using a
         5 point system for content, grammar, usage and mechanics, and
         spelling.
 
      -- Optional writing prompts may be assessed as Novice, Apprentice or
         Proficient. Rubrics to evaluate writing prompt responses can be
         assessed for each mode of writing: informative, expressive, and
         persuasive.
 
      -- Individual student data is used to make book recommendations to help
         with weakest skills and reinforce specific vocabulary and
         comprehension proficiency.
 
      -- Immediate scoring and evaluative reports are provided.
 
      -- Assessment format of the program helps to familiarize students with
         the structure of state and national tests, and helps to give students
         the confidence needed to do well.
 
      -- Professionally developed skills lessons offer skills definitions, key
         teaching points and activities on 39 comprehension and vocabulary
         skills.
 
     The limited-time twelve-month subscription price for the program is
 $99 for a teacher license accommodating 40 students, $349 for a school site
 license for 200 students, and $79 for 50 student site license extensions. For
 more information on iReAch please call 1-877-268-6871.
     Scholastic take pride in its 80-year history of serving the reading needs
 of K-8 educators and students. The company focuses its educational publishing
 efforts on its fast-growing research-based reading improvement instructional
 materials consisting of intervention, technology, phonics, early childhood,
 extended learning and summer school programs, which help students overcome
 reading problems and achieve higher test scores. Scholastic's reading
 improvement programs hold market leadership positions with Read 180(TM),
 Scholastic Read XL(TM) and WiggleWorks(R), and the introduction of its
 effective Scholastic Phonics Reading(TM), Scholastic Reading Counts(TM) and
 Building Language for Literacy(TM) programs.  Scholastic has a significant
 long-term educational presence in schools with supplementary materials such as
 classroom magazines, paperback libraries, and professional books for teachers,
 Grolier nonfiction children's books for libraries, as well as core curriculum
 reading improvement products.
     Scholastic is the world's largest publisher and distributor of children's
 books.  A global children's publishing and media company serving the needs of
 parents, teachers, and children, Scholastic provides proprietary book and
 software distribution through school book clubs, school book fairs and to
 classrooms, as well as through the retail trade.  Since 1920, Scholastic has
 created quality educational materials for schools and has expanded its reach
 to include the distribution of books, software, toys, online learning services
 and television programming directly to the home.  Scholastic recently acquired
 Grolier, the leading print and online publisher of children's reference
 materials and the leader in children's direct to home book clubs.
 Internationally, Scholastic operates wholly owned companies in Argentina,
 Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand,
 The Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and the United Kingdom. The U.S.
 Scholastic web site http://www.scholastic.com is a leading provider of
 educational services online for parents, teachers and children.
 
                     MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT -  Click Here
                http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X31529202
 
 SOURCE  Scholastic