Last year, Higher Expectations partnered with Racine Unified to launch a literacy program called "Racine Early Intervention," which provides teachers with additional training in teaching literacy and gives students one-on-one support focused on literacy skills. We highlighted this program in our Annual Report: Inspiring Action, Making an Impact.
A second group of Racine Unified teachers completed this program this past school year, and the district continued to see the success that this had in improving outcomes for students.
Sometimes it’s a difficult decision, Maggie Morgan (Unified's Title 1 Professional Development & Intervention Coordinator) said, between trying to increase the reading levels a little bit of a large group of students working all together or to work one-on-one with one students and help that students a lot. But one-on-one help often makes a huge difference for that one child and his or her family.
Although the program seemed to help students improve their reading, Morgan and her colleagues observed that chronic absenteeism and trauma were barriers to improvement.
“Both of these barriers are systemic issues and classroom teachers need support in handling these issues,” Morgan said.
This project was just one piece of a collaborative leadership effort by Unified, Higher Expectations, United Way, the Racine Police Department and the Johnson Foundation, focused on race, equity and inclusion.