Read Charlotte creates virtual program to help students stay on track

Read Charlotte creates virtual program to help students stay on track

MECKLENBURG COUNTY, N.C. — With kids at home due to COVID-19, some experts are worried that students won’t keep reading at grade level.

Read Charlotte created a summer program to help to make sure children don’t fall behind.

Channel 9′s education reporter Elsa Gillis learned about The Reading Checkup, a free program for Mecklenburg County parents of K-4 students.

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Kids can take two quizzes to determine their reading level. Then, you get targeted resources and recommendations to help them stay on track. All you need is a smartphone.

“So I think it’s really easy to use. It’s very user friendly,” said Marybeth Kubinski.

A parent and educator herself, Kubinski and her rising third grader took advantage of Read Charlotte’s Reading Checkup.

“The quizzes really helped me understand where he had gaps or where he was really good at,” she said.

Gillis also talked to Munro Richardson, executive director of Read Charlotte, on how they’ve been working on this program since schools closed.

“Many of these activities don’t require much by the way of materials or resources. You can use things you have around the home,” he said.

Munro pointed Channel 9 to a recent report by consulting firm Mckinsey and Company that shines a light on the potential learning impact of COVID-19 school closures.

Looking at a scenario in which school instruction doesn’t fully resume before January 2021, they found that the average learning loss is seven months, with low-income students falling behind by more than a year.

“I think that it behooves us to take the Mckinsey estimate seriously as a very possible scenario that could happen if we are not intentional about really focusing on making sure that children have the supports they need,” Munro said.

Read Charlotte has nearly 80 community partners who have joined forces for this initiative, including CMS and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library.

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