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1 NIFL Community Literacy Summit 2007 “Experiences from the Field” Helene H. Kramer Good Schools for All / Buffalo Reads.

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Presentation on theme: "1 NIFL Community Literacy Summit 2007 “Experiences from the Field” Helene H. Kramer Good Schools for All / Buffalo Reads."— Presentation transcript:

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2 1 NIFL Community Literacy Summit 2007 “Experiences from the Field” Helene H. Kramer Good Schools for All / Buffalo Reads

3 2 Good Schools for All Program of Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo Role – independent, neutral convener Mission – improve student achievement Focus area - literacy

4 3 Why literacy? Why “community” literacy? #1 priority – 3 Superintendents Statistics: BPS students –62% of 4 th graders not proficient –79% of 8 th graders not proficient –38% don’t graduate from high school Statistics: Preschool children / Adults –50% children entering pre-K “not ready” –30% of adults at literacy level 1 (65,000) –30% of adults at literacy level 2 (65,000) Cycle of intergenerational illiteracy

5 4 Literacy Levels and Annual Earnings 0 10,000 20,000 30,000 40, ,000 60, Literacy Level Mean Annual Earnings Prose Document Quantitative 2004 Poverty Guideline, Family of 3 Mean Annual Earnings of the Employed by Literacy Level (in 2004$)

6 5 Getting Started Convened local literacy providers –Branded “Buffalo Reads” –Developed collaborative model Conducted feasibility study –Interviewed stakeholders –Searched web for resources / best practices –Held Literacy Summit –Visited Cleveland

7 6 Findings – Feasibility Study Current System: Fragmented Agency-centered Spotty quality standards Spotty training for staff, volunteers Different outcomes measures Small % of all learners served Gaps in services / capacity issues Competing for sparser dollars Lack of data Outcomes not changing significantly

8 7 What We Set Out To Do Set goal of 100% literacy Transform the system –learner-centered, learner-driven –comprehensive, coordinated, collaborative and integrated –framework for quality

9 8 What We Set Out To Do Recruit and retain learners Broaden the scope and range of literacy Create a strategic plan for literacy developed by the community

10 9 Citywide Literacy Campaign – Planning Framework (1) Campaign Champions Group Steering Group Planning Task Forces - Birth – School Age - Pre-K to grade 4 - Grades 5 – 8 - Grades 9 – 12 - College/Univ. students - Parents/Families -Adults -Out of School Youth Horizontal / Across Ages - Tracking, Eval., - Workplace Lit. Quality Stds, - Financial Lit. Data System - Health Lit. - Development - Computer Lit. - Marketing/PR/Adv - Training & TA -Info & Referral (hotline/web site) Members drawn from Steering Group, Forum volunteers and specialists Citywide Literacy Plan Launch Implementation Community Literacy Forum (community stakeholders) Input 1 Input 2 Input 3 Needs Assessment Funding Analysis Inventory of Programs & Services Outsourced under guidance of Steering Group Outcomes Yearly Report to Public Focus Groups (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) ( 7) (8) Vertical / Age Good Schools for All and the Buffalo Reads Literacy Collaborative

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15 14 THE STRATEGIC PLAN FOR LITERACY

16 15 Goals Age Appropriate Literacy Every child is fully prepared for success when starting school (pre-school) Each child is fully prepared to achieve grade-level literacy standards (preK-12) Parents and families have information and skills they need to help their children succeed Graduating high school students are fully prepared for college-level work

17 16 Goals Age Appropriate Literacy College students will graduate and be prepared for graduate school or a job Out-of-school youth will engage in learning programs leading to further education and employment

18 17 Goals Adult Literacy Improve literacy for job seekers and incumbent workers (workplace literacy) Improve patients’ ability to read, understand and act on health care info (health literacy) Help low and moderate income people become less dependent on government subsidies & more financially self-sufficient (financial literacy) Ensure every person has access to and is trained to use a computer (computer literacy)

19 18 Goals Providers Implement framework for quality –Quality standards –Common assessment & outcomes measures –Logic model –Central data system Ensure each provider has well-qualified and well-trained staff and volunteers

20 19 Good Schools for All and Buffalo Reads “Read to Succeed” Citywide Literacy Campaign – Planning and Goals September 20, 2006 Goals 1. Every child is fully prepared for success when starting school (pre-school). 2. Every child is fully prepared to achieve grade-level literacy standards (preK-12). 3. Parents and families have the information and skills they need to help their children succeed in school. 4. Graduating high-school students have the literacy skills they need for college-level work. 5. Graduating college students will have the literacy skills required for graduate school or employment 6. Out-of-school youth engage in learning programs leading to further education and employment. 7. Job seekers and incumbent workers improve their literacy skills (workforce literacy). 8. Patients can read, understand and act on health care informa- tion (health literacy). 9. Low and moderate-income people become less dependent on government subsidies and more financially self-sufficient (financial literacy). 10. Every person has access to and is trained to use a computer (computer literacy). 11. Each literacy provider has well-qualified and well-trained staff and volunteers. 12. Literacy providers implement a framework for quality by: - implementing quality standards based on best practice; - using common assessment and outcome measures across program types; - adhering to a logic model to guide operations and grant applications; - entering learner data into a central data system. 13. Funding, both existing and from new sources, is aligned with the strategic plan. Community-Wide Planning Process 17 Task Forces By Population  Birth – School Age  PreK – Grade 4  Grades 5 – 8 (Middle Grades)  Grades 9 – 12 (High School)  Out-of-School Youth  College/University Students  Parents and Families  Adults By Functional Area  Computer Literacy  Financial Literacy  Health Literacy  Workplace Literacy By Support Process  Data System, Evaluation, Tracking, Quality Standards  Development  Information and Referral  Marketing (including PR, Advertising)  Training and Technical Assistance Implementation Strategies (first three years) – see over Note: The implementation strategies will be kept ‘live’ and subject to continuous improvement in the light of “action learning” and changing circumstances. The overall goal of 100% literacy, however, is a permanent ‘beacon’ that guides the campaign. Overall goal is 100% literacy for every child and adult

21 20 Year 1 (2007) 1. Build the infrastructure: 1.1 Secure funding for, and recruit Implementation Team; 1.2 Develop and implement a comprehensive marketing plan; 1.3 Acquire “learner tracking system” and pilot with 10 agencies; 1.4 Implement a call center (211) for learners and volunteers; 1.5 Design and launch a website for learners, volunteers and agencies; 1.6 Begin use of the logic model for all grant proposals. 2. Begin program implementation (within the framework for quality): 2.1 BPS & Buffalo Reads will work in a “literacy zone” to a. Develop and align curriculum for childcare centers in the literacy zone and track student progress through 3rd grade; b. Help parents of pre-school children support their children’s learning; c. Create “safety net” by engaging healthcare providers to identify children’s learning barriers & recommend appropriate interventions. 2.2 Help each Middle Grade and High School child achieve grade level standards in literacy by: a. Aligning after-school, out-of school, arts, cultural and other community-based programs with NYS Learning Standards; b. Providing structured career development support; c. Making reading fun and relevant / creating a book-rich environment. 2.3 Ensure adults have the literacy skills to function in all areas of life by: a. Convening all adult literacy providers to help implement the strategies in the citywide literacy plan; b. Increasing services in high-risk neighborhoods in convenient loca- tions and with varied modes of instruction; c Holding a one-day summit to develop retention strategies; d. Raising funds to increase the capacity of all adult providers. 2.4 Expand capacity to provide workplace literacy by increasing number of agencies working in this area collaboratively. Focus areas include: a. Incumbent workers in entry-level jobs at major health facilities; b. Immigrants and refugees to improve English-language skills & job opportunities; c. Out-of-school youth for learning programs leading to further education and employment. 2.5 Develop framework to implement health care strategies for providers and patients: a. Secure funding to develop framework and implement programs; b. Hold “small summit” for senior decision makers in healthcare organizations to raise awareness and secure commitment; c. Hold “larger summit” for healthcare professionals to create awareness and provide intervention strategies. 2.6 Increase financial self-sufficiency & reduce dependence on government subsidies by: a. Identifying financial literacy programs and standards in use; b. Selecting standards for financial literacy & identifying target populations. 2.7 Design and implement a summer literacy program for children to help them retain skills. Good Schools for All and Buffalo Reads “Read to Succeed” Citywide Literacy Campaign – Implementation Strategies Year 2 (2008) 1. Increase parent involvement. 1.1 Develop and implement a parent education campaign (building on Year 1 2.1b), utilizing community gateways. 1.2 Develop and implement a parent mentoring program. 1.3 Improve communications between schools and parents. Respective needs to be identified via a survey. 1.4 Support schools in becoming welcoming places. Launch a pilot based on best practices. 2. Strengthen community support for schools and education. 2.1 Create an exemplary spirit of community support and ownership for schools. 2.2 Establish education as a community value, supported by all. 2.3 Partner every school with a community, business, civic or faith organization. 2.4 Equip parents to create a home where education is valued. 3. Improve computer literacy. 3.1 In conjunction with the Superin- tendent, pilot wireless access on the roofs of the five focus schools (see Year 1 2.1) to provide internet access to the schools and the surrounding neighborhoods. 3.2 Establish computer labs in the communities around the schools and provide training. 3.3 Ensure every household in the five school area can obtain a computer at low or no cost on the condition that training is undertaken. Year 3 (2009) 1. Increase engagement of colleges and universities. 1.1 Establish a research center that identifies quality standards and best practices. 1.2 Create developmental template for middle and high school students so they under- stand requirements for college- level work. 1.3 Create career development centers in every school. 1.4 Create service-learning opportunities for all college students to serve as literacy volunteers. 1.5 Help improve relationships in the classroom between students, teachers and parents, focusing on cultural diversity and parent involve- ment. Strategy implementation and outcomes carry forward to subsequent years c/f C/f Outcomes leading to…. Improved Literacy Central Data System

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23 22 Initial Implementation Steps (started Jan 2007) Building implementation infrastructure Developing marketing communications plan Identified a “literacy zone” Tackling “school readiness” –Head Start programs –Home-based child care sites Writing grants for central data system “accountability system” and central hotline Planning formal launch in Sept 2007 –Workplace Literacy & Economic Dev Summit

24 23 Rules of Engagement for Agencies Buffalo Reads member Include implementation component in agency’s strategic plan Adopt quality standards Design learner-centered, learner-driven services Assess learner uniformly across program type Measure outcomes uniformly across program type Use logic model Input data into central data system

25 24 Measuring Effectiveness Central data system (“accountability system”) –Learner tracking – longitudinal history –Business intelligence –ROI for learners, funders, community –Drive program quality Coalition – program evaluation Long-term impact evaluation

26 25 Successes to Date 40 agencies working together to support plan’s goals Developed strong relationships with Superin- tendent, Mayor & other community leaders Local foundations funded planning phase and implementation start-up (believers) Organized health literacy collaborative Financial literacy task force ready to pilot Working with NYS Chancellor on unified Buffalo strategy for early childhood support

27 26 Success Factors Active support from community leaders Funders align grantmaking with plan Literacy infused everywhere Maintain high levels of communication and collaboration Ubiquitous marketing and outreach – general and targeted messaging

28 27 Benefits to Agencies Hot-line (2-1-1) for learners & volunteers Robust “Buffalo Reads” web site Expansive marketing-public relations campaign Training / technical assistance center Access to more federal, national, state $$$ with leverage from local funders Access to data

29 28 Benefits to Buffalo Improved student achievement Increased graduation rates Students ready for college-level work Improved job readiness & skilled work force Increased $$ from federal and national sources Reduced dependence on public, tax-supported programs (welfare, remediation, unemployment)


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