Welcome to the Fall 2021 edition of the CORE Academic Quarterly newsletter!

In this edition of the Academic Quarterly, the Reading Expert explores what has changed in our knowledge base since the International Dyslexia Association adopted a definition of dyslexia in 2003, and how a new definition can help move the needle toward more accurate ways to diagnose and intervene.

The Marvelous Mathematician has a conversation with Dr. Ben Clarke, Associate Professor at the University of Oregon, about the importance of elementary math assessment, look-fors when selecting math assessments, and what actions to take when assessment data reveal gaps in learning.

In the Leadership Corner you’ll find resources to help determine how well your current elementary reading/ELA curriculum, or one you’re considering adopting, aligns with the Science of Reading and Structured Literacy.


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Free Half-Day Event: Tuesday, October 19 | 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. PT

Join us for The California Reading Coalition’s First Annual Virtual Gathering. CORE, Pivot Learning and literacy leaders across California will share the opportunities and challenges to improve reading instruction and outcomes for all our students.

The Annual Gathering is designed to be interactive and collaborative, providing an opportunity to share successes, brainstorm with fellow educators, and chart a course to ensure California’s children thrive.

Pivot Learning’s CEO Arun Ramanathan will lead the breakout session Connecting with Teachers — the Shift from Balanced Literacy. The closing panel discussion, moderated by CORE’s president Robert Sheffield, will be about the future and direction of reading instruction in California.


Enhance your practice with CORE’s 2021-22 free professional learning webinar series. From word problems and evidence-based practices in reading instruction to culturally responsive teaching, our webinars are a convenient and free way to build your knowledge. Watch them on your own or as part of your PLC. Everyone is welcome!


We are excited to share that Robert Sheffield will be joining our team as the incoming President of CORE, Inc.. Robert shares our commitment to improving outcomes for historically underserved students. He has devoted his career to building the skills of educators to improve student academic outcomes through his time as an executive at WestEd and the College Board, and as a district leader and classroom teacher. We are confident Robert will build on Linda Diamond’s legacy as CORE’s co-founder and past President, as well as CORE’s work nationally to promote the science of reading instruction and transform professional learning for educators.

“We are thrilled to have Robert join CORE as its new President. Robert’s leadership will enable CORE to grow its reach and impact to improve teaching and learning in the districts and schools serving our nation’s most vulnerable students,” said Arun Ramanathan, CEO of Pivot Learning.   (more…)

The National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) regularly convenes reading experts to review every textbook used by teacher preparation programs in their required reading coursework. The Teaching Reading Sourcebook was listed in 2020 Teacher Prep Review as one of 10 textbooks that comprehensively and rigorously cover the scientific basis and instructional elements of the five essential components of effective reading instruction. Additionally, the report found that the Teaching Reading Sourcebook is used by more teacher prep programs than any other textbook in the top 10 ranking.

Now, NCTQ is making their textbook reviews available to the public in a new reading textbook database. More than 900 textbooks have been reviewed and rated as Exemplary, Acceptable or Unacceptable. The Teaching Reading Sourcebook is rated Exemplary.

Learn more about the Teaching Reading Sourcebook and download a sampler of the textbook.

Welcome to the Spring 2021 edition of the CORE Academic Quarterly newsletter!

In this edition of the Academic Quarterly, the Reading Expert shares recommended practices to leverage Tier 1 reading instruction to address COVID-related learning losses.

The Marvelous Mathematician provides recommendations for how to identify and prioritize unfinished learning needs so all students build their mathematical proficiency.

Finally, in the Leadership Corner you’ll find a summary of The National Center on Intensive Intervention (NCII) recently published Intensifying Literacy Instruction: Essential Practices guide.


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Dr. Dale WebsterOn Tuesday, April 20, 2021, CORE’s Chief Academic Officer, Dale Webster, will join over 100 other reading scholars for the Building Consensus: Aligning Reading Research with Practice Forum hosted by Purdue University.

The goal of the forum is to center on what is currently known about reading development —and effective instruction— in the hope that commonalities across a range of fields can be highlighted. Another aim of the discussion is to craft a statement about reading development that could be presented to audiences outside the university, in particular to legislators and the media, but also to key stakeholders such as K–12 school leaders and parents. The statement would summarize current research and present ways to develop reading, writing and language through effective instruction and best practices.

Announcing a Common Definition and an Initiative to Preserve the Integrity of Reading Science
The term “Science of Reading” has been used more and more over the past several years but with varying meanings and misconceptions. On February 3, 2021 “The Science of Reading: A Defining Movement” – a coalition of educators, policymakers, education advocates, and academics – launched a common definition of the Science of Reading. (more…)

Pajaro Valley Unified School District (CA) students whose teachers participated in training and instructional coaching provided by CORE achieved greater growth in their reading skills.

Many factors contribute to student achievement but research conducted by SEG Measurement, an education research, evaluation, and assessment firm, has found that professional development provided by CORE moves the needle on student achievement. A study of third grade reading performance in Pajaro Valley Unified School District (PVUSD) conducted in January 2020 and recently peer-reviewed for presentation at AACE’s Innovate Learning 2020 Summit found that students in classrooms with teachers who participated in CORE professional development showed statistically significant growth in their reading skills in comparison to students in classrooms whose teachers did not receive training and coaching from CORE. 

Since the 2016–17 school year, CORE has provided professional development and technical assistance to elementary teachers and administrators in PVUSD to help implement, in addition to their broader English Language Arts instruction, the Systematic Instruction in Phonological Awareness, Phonics and Sight words (SIPPS) reading foundational skills program. “We weren’t using SIPPS to fidelity,” Dr. Michelle Rodriguez, Superintendent at PVUSD, says. “Specifically, teachers weren’t given the instruction or training to implement it well.” CORE began working closely with classroom teachers and instructional coaches, providing training and instructional coaching within the context of the SIPPS curriculum and their own classrooms.  (more…)

Welcome to the Fall 2020 edition of the CORE Academic Quarterly newsletter!

In this edition of the Academic Quarterly, the Reading Expert shares recommendations and resources to help you better support students with dyslexia when they are participating in remote learning.

The Marvelous Mathematician shares many techniques to help students with dyslexia overcome their challenges learning mathematics with less pain and with greater success.

Finally, in the Leadership Corner you’ll find you’ll find guidance for selecting and implementing valid and reliable screeners, high-quality curriculum, and intervention materials.


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