NEW YORK, March 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Scholastic Education, the world's largest provider of instructional technology for schools, today announced the launch of READ 180® Next Generation, a powerful new version of the country's premier reading intervention program currently used by more than 1 million students in schools across the country every day.
The result of five years of intensive research and development, READ 180 Next Generation incorporates new technology, content and supports to make teachers more effective, school leaders more empowered, and students more engaged – building upon the science, the research and the model that has been proven to raise achievement by dozens of independent evaluators. Based upon research by Dr. Ted Hasselbring of the Peabody College of Education at Vanderbilt University, READ 180 first launched in 1999 and, now 12 years later, serves more than 1 million students every day in schools across the country.
"The foundation for success in school and life is literacy – and without that fundamental skill, students will always struggle in the pursuit of their dreams," said Margery Mayer, President of Scholastic Education. "From dashboards rich with data and resources, to new content, to writing instruction that aligns to the Common Core, READ 180 Next Generation will help students take ownership of their learning, help teachers use data to differentiate their instruction and help school and district leaders track the progress of students, classrooms and schools. All of these enhancements will help to accelerate the learning of these at risk students and put them on the path to success."
Recognizing that raising reading achievement is a responsibility co-owned by teachers, school leaders and students, Scholastic Education focused on creating new tools, instruction and content to support each of those groups.
With the goal of making every READ 180 teacher a highly effective teacher, READ 180 Next Generation includes new dashboards to help them become experts on data, differentiating instruction and lesson planning.
- A new Teacher Dashboard draws upon user-friendly technologies like those used in online banking to deliver instructional data to teachers anytime/anywhere and helps them sort through it, analyze it and use it to provide targeted instruction that addresses each student's specific needs.
- Teachers can opt in to notifications about student performance, schedule reports to be delivered to their e-mail inboxes, and easily create lesson plans that they can send to school leaders – all from their classrooms, offices or home computers.
- The dashboard links teachers to on-demand professional development, and connects teachers to the 8,000-member READ 180 Community, a social network where READ 180 teachers support each other, share lesson plans and communicate directly with Scholastic experts.
- New end-of-workshop projects and "rSkills" assessments help students gain valuable higher order thinking skills and meet the raised expectations of the Common Core State Standards.
New features for students in READ 180 Next Generation are designed to give them more ownership and accountability over their learning, more motivation to push themselves toward success, and more exciting and relevant content.
- A new Student Dashboard taps into research on gaming by giving students the ability to more clearly track their progress, see evidence of their success and earn rewards for topping their "personal bests." Rewarding personal achievements and acknowledging individual success is especially motivating (some experts say addicting) for students who have experienced school failure in the past.
- New writing software and instruction in the READ 180 rBook are designed to help students build competence and confidence and make and support arguments. The writing instruction helps students move from single- to multi-paragraph essays. The writing software provides scaffolded support as students improve their writing from draft to draft, then lets them send it to their teacher for review.
- READ 180 Next Generation is loaded with new, exciting content, especially non-fiction content, and new digital "eReads" that students can unlock in the software and let them dive deeper into content and learn valuable 21st Century literacy skills.
For School Leaders:
After more than 12 years working with school district leaders to raise reading achievement, Scholastic has learned that schools have the most success when their principals and superintendents are engaged with their READ 180 implementations.
- A new Leadership Dashboard gives school and district leaders access to student-by-student, class-by-class and school-by-school data so they can track the success of their READ 180 implementation. They can sign up for e-mail alerts when various progress indicators are achieved and quickly know where their attention is required, and get snapshots of student success from across a school or district.
- New technology in READ 180 Next Generation makes the program browser-based and easier to install across a school or district. And because the technology is delivered from a central server instead of on each student workstation, implementing READ 180 Next Generation is significantly easier.
"After talking to teachers, students and school leaders, and studying the research we've gathered over twelve years of helping struggling readers, we're excited to put READ 180: Next Generation to work in schools and help the next generation achieve their dreams," Mayer said.
New research released just this month from the Striving Readers pilot sites showed students in READ 180 significantly improved in some aspect of reading at three separate sites.
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