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The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading Selects Oakland Reads 2020 as a 2013 Community Pacesetter

The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading Selects Oakland Reads 2020 as a 2013 Community Pacesetter

The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading has selected Oakland Reads 2020 as a 2013 Community Pacesetter, an honor bestowed upon select communities nationwide that have set the pace in improving reading proficiency among its youngest students. This honor reflects the energy, mobilization and creativity the Oakland community has incorporated in its collaborative efforts. Thirty-seven communities across the U.S. were selected for this honor for 2013.

"Every child in this city deserves an opportunity to learn to read and write, and all of Oakland is invested in solutions that will assist them," said Mayor Jean Quan. "Successful students can reach their dreams, strengthen our local economy, and help us reduce violence in our community. The Community Pacesetter designation demonstrates that we are on the right track and I'm proud to support this initiative."

The Grade-Level Reading Campaign is a nationwide movement of local leaders, states, nonprofits, and foundations that focus on the most important predictor of school success and high school graduationgrade-level reading by the end of third grade. The 140 communities involved in this campaign have adopted a collective impact strategy, engaging the full community around the goal of supporting low-income children from birth through third grade.

Acknowledging that schools alone cannot address all of the challenges that keep children from learning to read, these communities work with nonprofits and other partners to ensure that children arrive at kindergarten ready to succeed, attend school regularly and keep learning through the summer months.

Oakland Reads 2020 launched in June 2013. It is a collaboration of the school district, city and local agencies, and a network of organizations committed to the success of early learners. Currently, only 42 percent of Oakland third grade students read at or above grade level. The initiative's goal is to double that percentage, resulting in at least 85 percent of students reading successfully by the end of third grade by 2020.

"The Oakland Reads 2020 collaboration is very much in line with the Oakland Unified School District's vision for thriving school communities where each child is supported to be ready to succeed in college and careers, and lead healthy and happy lives," said Curtiss Sarikey, Associate Superintendent of Family, Schools and Community Partnerships. "We are encouraged by the recognition of these valuable partnerships in Oakland."

Oakland Reads 2020 has mobilized the community to build a commitment and take action around four key pillars of reading success:

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Kaitlin Milligan Kaitlin Milligan is from Fort Lauderdale, FL, but is currently a Freshman studying English at The University of Florida. She has aspirations to be a playwright and television scriptwriter in New York City. In her free time she sings, writes, plays piano, and sees as many Broadway shows as possible.



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