Success Stories

Your Success is Our Success

Professional Development Success Stories to Tell

Each of the schools below were supported in their district implementations of ARC solutions with between 20 – 30 days of intensive, job-embedded professional development.

Here are some of their successes.

Atlantic City Community Charter School

This K–5 charter school (ACCCS) began implementing the 100 Book Challenge in September 2014. They continued the following school year with ongoing professional development and added grade-level instruction with project-based learning in a few choice classrooms. ACCCS also increased their strategic intervention for students struggling with Foundational Skills. With the support of their ARC Coach, ACCCS continued to dig deeper into the Standards to ensure rigorous grade-level instruction.

ACCCS ended the school year 2015–2016 with 80% of students able to read grade-level text with basic comprehension.

Key Elements of Success

  • Collaborative decision-making and support from the principal were constant.
  • Ongoing, strategic in-class support for teachers was provided by both the school Reading Specialist and the ARC Coach.
  • Teachers were dedicated in their efforts to monitor what was working with daily formative assessment and to adjust teaching and interventions to support student learning.

Bristol Township SD

Bristol’s Director of Elementary Curriculum drove the implementation of ARC’s Core Curriculum and Wide Reading program for nine elementary schools in Grades 3–6.

Bristol Township School District went from 28% proficient to 71.8% proficient from October to June—more than 40 points of growth.

Key Elements of Success

  • A commitment was made to leadership training for principals.
  • Clear expectations were set for data-driven instruction and interventions for students.
  • Principals trained to confer with students and understand the formative assessment process of the IRLA.
  • Monthly leadership meetings were held for all principals.

Chester Upland School District

Chester Upland’s literacy initiative with American Reading Company is in its third year. 100 Book Challenge implementation the first year included more than 30 days of PD, followed by implementation of Comprehensive Core curriculum for the second. The third year continued with Comprehensive Core accompanied by approximately 20 days of professional development per elementary school.

The district more than doubled the number of students reading proficient or above, going from 20.3% in October to 55% in June.

Key Elements of Success

  • Chester used ARC’s Core Curriculum as their Literacy Block in grades K-5, allowing for teachers and students to share a common language throughout.
  • With the support of our Executive Coaches in their classrooms, Chester Upland looked to ARC as a solid thinking partner at the school and district level.

Kenmore-Tonawanda (KenTon) School District

Kenton School District came on board with ARC in March 2015 to create a culture of literacy in two schools, Grades K–2. In September, KenTon expanded to a third school, implementing 100 Book Challenge in Grades K–3 in all 3 schools.

Because of the great gains experienced in all participating grades, KenTon will now be adding two new schools for the 2016–2017 school year as well as expanding through 4th grade in all participating schools.

The district doubled the percent of students reading at proficient or above, going from 20.3% in October to 55% in June.

Key Elements of Success

  • Collaborative decision-making took place between district leadership and principals.
  • Teachers had frequent and strategic in-class support from ARC Coaches.
  • Monthly district meetings and biweekly phone calls were held with district leadership to review data and PD plans.

Livonia Elementary School

A small, close-knit community in upstate New York, Livonia created a culture of literacy around the importance of independent reading and of every student learning to love reading. The project started with Grades PreK–3, but will be expanding into Grades 4, 5, and 6 next year.

Livonia ended the school year with 78% of their students proficient or above. They reduced the percent of Emergency students by 17%.

Key Elements of Success

  • Strong principal leadership and participation helped to promote great enthusiasm.
  • Leadership walk-throughs ensured accountability.
  • Professional development was differentiated to meet the needs of teachers in their learning and implementation process.

Reading School District

The “Reading is reading” initiative kicked off in the 2014–2015 school year with a fourth quarter launch of 100 Book Challenge in four middle schools. The 2015–2016 school year included 100 Book Challenge in Grades 4-7 and ARC’s Core Curriculum in the middle school English classrooms.

Reading more than quadrupled the number of students proficient or above—going from 8.3% to 36.2% proficient.

Key Elements of Success

  • Extensive data monitoring at the classroom, school, and district level took place.
  • Structures for communication with district and school leaders were established.
  • The superintendent lent valued support and school staff, including school leaders, worked hard for results.
  • Consistent implementation plans were established and monitored.

Three Rivers Elementary

Three Rivers Elementary School started their journey with a brand-new principal at a brand-new school which had been completed days prior to the start of the new school year. The implementation included teachers from K–6, all of whom taught multiple sections of English Language Arts. They used the IRLA and the Foundational Skills Toolkits to increase reading growth this year.

Three Rivers started with 17.8% of students reading proficiently and ended the year with 55.5% proficient or above—almost 40 points of growth.

Key Elements of Success

  • A schoolwide reading culture was cultivated to “establish a new normal” for the school.
  • A Literacy Leadership Team was created to help manage implementation and get the community involved in the work.
  • Ongoing professional development shifted from levels accuracy to grade-level instruction to ensure all teachers understood the gradual release model, and all students had access to complex text daily.

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