Trousdale County will be one of 48 school districts across Tennessee to participate in an optional Pre-K-12 Literacy Implementation Network.

The Tennessee Department of Education made the announcement on March 8 and also listed Trousdale County Schools as one of eight mentoring districts within the program.

Trousdale County will mentor Smith County, Cannon County, Clay County, Jackson County and Van Buren County.

“The state was able to get a grant to improve literacy, and then they were looking at districts who had success with third-grade literacy,” said Director of Schools Clint Satterfield. “Our third-grade results were near 54% in 2018-19.

“It’s a five-year commitment but the work we’ve done will be for grades K-2… There’s an opportunity for us to grow and get better while also opening up our classrooms as laboratories for those other districts. They can observe our teachers, our lessons.”

The Pre-K-12 Literacy Implementation Network is part of Tennessee’s Reading 360 initiative to help boost strong reading skills amongst Tennessee students.

As part of Reading 360, eight regional implementation networks will consist of 48 districts with the overarching goal of supporting the implementation of high-quality English Language Arts (ELA) instructional materials for Pre-K-12 students through competitive grants over the next five years.

“Over the next five years, the regional Pre-K-12 Literacy Implementation Networks will foster opportunity for districts to learn from each other and to form unique partnerships to support high-quality literacy instruction to build strong readers, which ultimately promotes success for our students and our state,” said Tennessee Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn in a press statement.

Mentor districts have multiple years of high-quality instructional materials implementation experience and will help build capacity of participant districts that have adopted and purchased new ELA materials in the past year. Additionally, mentor districts will support participant districts’ system-level implementation strategy.

The district partnerships will help ensure teachers have the resources and support necessary to offer high-quality learning experiences for all children. Additionally, the networks will provide free coaching support for the training and use of Tennessee Instructional Practice Guides.

This competitive grant opportunity was open to all Tennessee districts to apply. The selected mentor and participating districts will agree to the grant requirements, which includes data sharing and a five-year commitment per the $20 million federal Comprehensive State Literacy Development (CSLD) grant awarded to the department to support the launch of the regional implementation networks.

“Readers are leaders and leaders are readers,” State Rep. Terri Lynn Weaver, R-Lancaster, said in a press statement. “I commend our district for their outstanding literacy instruction in our community. I am confident Trousdale County Schools will do their part to help improve student literacy across the state.”

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-450-5756 or cgregory@hartsvillevidette.com. Contributing: Staff reports

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