Supporting Literacy Success for All Students with Comprehensive Programs: Direct Instruction's Corrective Reading Closes Achievement Gaps with Early Intervention at Michigan District

District Administration, May 2016 | Go to article overview

Supporting Literacy Success for All Students with Comprehensive Programs: Direct Instruction's Corrective Reading Closes Achievement Gaps with Early Intervention at Michigan District


By all accounts, Marysville School District in Michigan is a high-success, high-performance district. While the average state graduation rate hovers at about 78 percent, Marysville graduates 95 percent of its students. It's a point of pride that students exit Marysville--a suburban community located 55 miles northeast of Detroit--prepared to meet the rigorous demands of higher education.

With high performance comes popularity, and that's causing some challenges. Marysville Schools is highest in its county as a "school of choice," wherein parents of students from other districts can opt for their child to attend Marysville as long as space allows. As a result, 18 percent of the 2,800 student population, or over 500 students, live outside of the district.

An all-inclusive solution

The reading curriculum was also showing its age, and due to changing standards, slipped out of alignment. Shawn Wightman, superintendent, realized that academic achievement gaps were beginning to show. "We were having pockets of kids who weren't achieving to the level we were expecting them to. We didn't have a progress monitoring system in place for reading. We didn't want kids going from grade to grade undetected."

That led Wightman and his team to select Corrective Reading, one in a series of Direct Instruction programs from McGraw-Hill Education, starting in the 2014-15 school year. Corrective Reading is specifically for readers who struggle with decoding and comprehension and who are lagging by one or more years in reading ability. Its purpose Is to develop critically important literacy skills for readers grades 3 and up.

The tipping point for selecting Corrective Reading was the embedded professional development. …

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