Today, the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) hosted more than 200 DC public, public charter and early childhood educators at the spring 2023 DC Literacy Convening: Advancing Excellence in Literacy Instruction at the Kellogg Conference Center at Gallaudet University.
“Literacy skills are critical to student success, not just in school but in life, and it is so important that our educators are well supported. We are delighted to welcome more than 200 DC educators to engage in high-quality literacy programming and build important connections across DC,” said State Superintendent Dr. Christina Grant. “We must provide our students with excellent teaching, and that means providing our educators with exciting professional learning opportunities like today’s event. OSSE remains committed to providing the supports necessary for educators to successfully teach our students how to read.”
Dr. Peter DeWitt, a national education expert, leadership coach and Education Week columnist, delivered the keynote address at the first citywide, in-person literacy convening. Educators also heard from local and national literacy experts, including Dr. Jade Wexler, University of Maryland, Associate Professor of Special Education & Inaugural College of Education Impact Professor, and Jenelle Bryant, a DC Public Schools Literacy Coach & Reading Interventionist and 2021 Milken Educator.
OSSE’s literacy work extends beyond the Literacy Convening, which was held virtually in spring 2022, and includes leading the DC Literacy Task Force in establishing a set of long-term, actionable recommendations to ensure all educators have access to high-quality literacy instructional training and resources.
“We must work together to advance literacy for students in the District,” said Allister Chang, Ward 2 DC State Board of Education Representative and Literacy Task Force Member. “I am proud of how DC is coming together to align our collective efforts to improve reading instruction and skills."
OSSE is also making robust investments in literacy supports for educators and students, including $16 million from the Comprehensive Literacy State Development (CLSD) grant program and over $3 million in Elementary & Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funds from the US Department of Education, to expand access to evidence-based literacy trainings for educators across the District.
OSSE has also committed $1.7 million in grant funds for local education agencies to select and adopt high-quality instructional resources and materials to support accelerated learning for more than 12,800 public and public charter school students, and approximately $16.8 million to fund high impact tutoring in literacy for approximately 7,600 students and is currently on track to reach more than 13,000 students across both math and literacy by fall 2024.
To learn more about OSSE investments in training programs for educators and other learning initiatives, visit osse.dc.gov.