• Petitioned Dexter Suggs

This petition was delivered to:

Dexter Suggs
Norma Johnson
C. E. McAdoo
Leslie Fisken
Greg Adams
Jody Carreiro
Tara Shephard
Dianne Curry

Keep Reading Recovery

    1. Our Community, Our Schools
    2. Petition by

      Our Community, Our Schools

      Little Rock, AR

  1.  
  2.   
March 2014

Victory

From Petition Creator: At tonight’s Little Rock School District school board meeting, the superintendent, Dr. Dexter Suggs, announced that our elementary schools can KEEP the Reading Recovery program! Principals will now have the prerogative to implement Reading Recovery at their schools, but the funds must come from Title I, NSLA (National School Lunch Act), or grant moneys. While this solution is not ideal, it is still a great victory for the many kids who have benefitted or will benefit from the Reading Recovery program. But the battle is clearly not over. We will keep pressing for Reading Recovery in every school and through partnerships with literacy specialists at UALR, we will work to ensure that these principals and teachers have every resource that they need.

Unfortunately, this victory comes with further qualifications. Our current Reading Recovery teachers were given pink slips several weeks ago. They will still have to reapply for whatever positions are created in the coming year. It is unconscionable that our teachers have been treated this way, and we hope that they rejoin us next year.

We want to express our deepest thanks to our petitioners. Nearly 1,800 people, about half of them Arkansans, signed this petition. This was truly a grassroots effort, and we are grateful for your support.

For those of you who live in central Arkansas, this petition was only the beginning. Let us find inspiration from this small success and press for more accountability from administrators and better opportunities for our community and our schools. These are monumental tasks, but many predecessors in Arkansas and across the South fought and sacrificed for educational opportunities. In my mind, I see Bob Moses, a math teacher from Harlem, walking the dusty roads of Mississippi in the 1960s to register voters before creating the Algebra Project to improve math education in the South. I see nine teenagers walking up the steps at Central High School in Little Rock. And I see Sarah Rice, a relatively unknown Alabama woman born in 1909, fighting for educational equality in the 1950s. She later recalled, “The things we tried to get from the school board, we couldn’t get, and when we had exhausted all our begging and going on to them and trying to show them the reason why we needed it, we went and got it ourselves.”

Parents, teachers, and citizens of Little Rock, the time has come for us to get it ourselves. Let’s exhibit the same dedication and persistence that our civil rights heroes did. There is a place for you in this effort.

Please join us at https://www.facebook.com/abetterlrsd as we work to create the best school system in the country.

To Dr. Dexter Suggs and the LRSD Board:

We, the undersigned, are summarily opposed to ending the Reading Recovery program in the Little Rock School District. For the following reasons, we urge the superintendent and board to continue and expand the current Reading Recovery program.

First, ending this successful program directly violates the first, second, fourth, and fifth “cultural imperatives” in the NEW Little Rock School District. If you are serious about these imperatives, then please provide leadership in following them. If you are not serious about these imperatives, then please stop referring to them.

If Reading Recovery is discontinued, the first imperative, “Children come first!,” will be flouted in favor of specious, short-term financial savings.

The second imperative states, “All employees are accountable for student achievement that meets or exceeds state standards.” The employees who are primarily accountable are teachers. They know what works best, and they overwhelmingly support the Reading Recovery program for helping their students meet state standards.

If “student success is the only option,” the fourth imperative, then a proven program with strong teacher support will be expanded, not cut. In particular, the one-on-one instruction provides our students with the attention and focus they need to catch up to their peers.

Likewise, LRSD’s Reading Recovery specialists have an impressive record of discovering and nurturing potential, the fifth imperative. Teachers are much more likely to discover and nurture potential when each student has their undivided attention.

Second, research confirms that Reading Recovery works. The Reading Recovery program is “the world’s most widely researched intervention for young children having extreme difficulty with early literacy learning,” according to UALR. The U. S. Department of Education found Reading Recovery “to have positive effects on general reading achievement and potentially positive effects on alphabetics, reading fluency, and comprehension for beginning readers.”

We believe the choice is clear. The LRSD should keep and expand Reading Recovery.

To:
Dexter Suggs
Norma Johnson
C. E. McAdoo
Leslie Fisken
Greg Adams
Jody Carreiro
Tara Shephard
Dianne Curry
Keep Reading Recovery

Sincerely,
[Your name]

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Let's Keep the Pressure Up

      Our Community, Our Schools
      Petition Organizer

      On thursday of last week, community members, parents, teachers, and academics came out to demand that our district support all our kids. In the paper the next day, our superintendent called the Reading Recovery Program a "luxury" we could not afford. This is not acceptable. The superintendent has promised a literacy plan in the next 30 days. He has said privately that Reading Recovery will not be in the plan and that he will make us go away. It is time for us to spread this petition even further. Will you please share this link with all your contacts? Will you please send an email to our board and to the superintendent?

      Link for the petition: http://www.change.org/petitions/dexter-suggs-keep-reading-recovery

      Link to contact the Board: http://www.lrsd.org/drupal/?q=content/board-members

      Email for the superintendent: dexter.suggs@lrsd.org

      Let's get this petition to 2000 this week! Thanks for all your help.

      Literacy for all kids is not a luxury, it is a RIGHT!

      Dexter Suggs: Keep Reading Recovery

      To Dr. Dexter Suggs and the LRSD Board: We, the undersigned, are summarily opposed to ending the Reading Recovery program in the Little Rock School...

    2. Reached 1,500 signatures
    3. Let's Send Emails

      Our Community, Our Schools
      Petition Organizer

      To date our Board has decided to ignore our petition. We have a very important Board meeting this Thursday. Would you take a few moments to send them a personal or professional note on why they should keep the Reading Recovery program. The more letters they get the better chance we have to help these kids.

      You can find their email address here:

      http://www.lrsd.org/drupal/?q=content/board-members

    4. Reached 1,000 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Kathy Reel ROLAND, AR
      • 7 months ago

      The ability to Read is the most important thing that people have to be able to do to be successful in this world and to drop this program would be such a disservice to our children

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Ruth Adams GEORGETOWN, KY
      • 7 months ago

      I have been a first grade teacher for almost 3 years. I am a newly trained RR teacher. IT WORKS like nothing else. RR changes children as learners.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Grant Newton LITTLE ROCK, AR
      • 7 months ago

      The future of our country rests in the hands of our children why would we put a stumbling block in front of them and let our nation be laughed at by the rest of the world

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Sasha Ray LITTLE ROCK, AR
      • 7 months ago

      Being a graduate of a LRSD high school and being able to matriculate into and complete my degree at one of the top twenty schools in the entire nation, I am keenly aware of the benefit and imperative of reading skills. Comprehension, speed, and reasoning are all important skills that are honed later in life but learned and appreciated while young. Youth who are not strong readers when they are young are usually not strong readers when they are older; this can be a limiting and even crippling factor that most people take for granted. I often tell people my favorite genre of books to this day is children's literature. While it may seem strange, children's literature is both simply tackles big issues that adults often over complicate in addition to being the first time students are actually shown the new universe opened up to them through reading. It is with this appreciation, gained when I myself was a youth, that I sign this petition today.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Sheri Tucker LITTLE ROCK, AR
      • 7 months ago

      The alternative plan offered is flawed in data analysis. Data is skewed. RR is research-based and needed.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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