Special Report

Getting Reading Right

What Teachers and Ed. Professors Know About Early Literacy
December 4, 2019
Special Report v39 15 GetReadingRight cover
Learning to read is arguably the most important academic experience students will have during their school years. But it’s not a given.

The “nation’s report card” shows that just 35 percent of 4th graders are proficient readers. That’s despite decades of cognitive research clarifying exactly which skills students need to be taught to read fluently.

So what’s happening in schools—and in teacher preparation—that’s making it so hard for some students to gain these foundational skills? New data offer some insights. The Education Week Research Center conducted two nationally representative surveys, one of K-2 and special education teachers and one of education professors. The findings, presented throughout this reporting series, tell an illuminating story about what teachers do and don’t know about reading and where they learned it, as well as offer a path forward for improving reading instruction in classrooms throughout the country.

This special report was produced with support from the Education Writers Association Reporting Fellowship program.