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A sweeping new curriculum mandate is rolling out to hundreds of New York City elementary schools this fall, requiring thousands of teachers to deploy new reading programs.
The mandate has won praise from many literacy experts, as schools have long had freedom to use a wide range of materials — with uneven results. But they note its success hinges on how strong the new materials are and how well they’re implemented.
Education department officials say they have a rigorous training plan and that all teachers using new reading curriculums will receive introductory training by the first day of school, including planning their first lessons. More intensive support and coaching is expected this fall.
If you’re an educator or school leader who is switching reading curriculums this year under the new mandate, Chalkbeat wants to hear from you. We’re interested in learning about whether you feel prepared to make the transition, what training you’ve received so far, and how you feel about the new curriculum materials your school is using.
If you teach reading in the first phase of schools to be covered by the mandate this fall — which includes districts 5, 11, 12, 14, 16, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 25, 26, 29, 30, 32, and some schools in District 75 — please let us know using the form below.
Nearly all of the schools in the districts mentioned above are required to use one of three programs: Wit & Wisdom, from a company called Great Minds; Into Reading from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; and Expeditionary Learning, from EL Education. Superintendents were given the authority to pick the reading curriculum for all of the schools under their purview — all but two have selected Into Reading.
Even if you’re not an educator, you can still fill out the form below to let us know what questions you have about the big changes underway.
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Alex Zimmerman is a reporter for Chalkbeat New York, covering NYC public schools. Contact Alex at firstname.lastname@example.org.