Seventy-two school districts in Indiana have been awarded the Competitive Science of Reading Grant, including six local districts. These districts will share a total of $15 million to focus on the science of reading principles in grades K-3. The grant amounts were based on K-3 enrollments, and the winning districts include Duneland, Griffith, Hanover Community, Lake Central, Hobart, and Munster.
The schools plan to use evidence-based practices aligned with the science of reading, which is a state-endorsed phonics-based curriculum. Successful applicants will be utilizing practices such as deploying a full-time literacy instructional coach in each school, supporting teachers and administrators pursuing professional development training, increasing instructional time for struggling readers, and purchasing core and supplemental curricular materials aligned to science of reading.
The Competitive Science of Reading Grant is part of Indiana’s $170 million investment in literacy and the science of reading. This initiative aims to improve literacy rates, especially after the 2021 third-grade state assessment showed that one in five students were unable to read. State Secretary of Education Katie Jenner stressed the importance of learning to read by third grade, emphasizing its critical impact on both individual students and the state’s economy. Jenner also announced a goal for Indiana to have 95% of third graders reading proficiently by 2027.