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Primary Literacy Achievement: A Collaborative Urban Partnership

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Author(s): Vikki K. Collins | Barbara Carroll | Sallie Averitt Miller | H. Marguerite Yates | Denise Perryman | Sabrina Alexander | Tammy R. Caldwell

Journal: Early Childhood Research & Practice
ISSN 1524-5039

Volume: 8;
Issue: 2;
Date: 2006;
Original page

Keywords: Early Childhood Education | Early Intervention | Literacy Development | Urban Schools

ABSTRACT
This study examined the effects of a collaborative urban partnership on student literacy achievement. The participants were approximately 220 students in kindergarten through third grade and 10 teachers. Participants were from an urban, low-income southeastern elementary school serving culturally diverse students. The school had been in its fourth year of Title I Program Improvement due to failure to achieve adequate gains on standardized test scores. The school leaders resolved to develop and implement an effective, research-based literacy program to ensure that all students would be able to read fluently and independently at grade level by the completion of third grade. The school leaders also realized the need to address the urban challenges of low teacher expectations for student achievement and lack of parental involvement. The collective efficacy, or shared belief system, of teachers and the resultant morale of teachers were also considered by school leaders. A collaborative urban partnership was created to furnish school and community supports to families while it provided inservice, preservice, and resource support for teachers to implement research-based instruction. Results of formal assessments from required state testing and from individual case studies indicated an increase in student literacy achievement. Informal data analysis also suggested an increase in student literacy achievement. Since it is possible that the gains in student achievement were due to other components of the collaborative partnership or even to other unspecified factors, further research is necessary.
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