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KIBSD Rural Schools receives grant funding to support Reading English & Alutiiq Development (READ) Project

The Kodiak Island Borough School District’s Reading English & Alutiiq Development (READ) Project seeks to improve English Language Arts academic performance across its five rural schools (Akhiok, Chiniak, Old Harbor, Ouzinkie, and Port Lions) serving approximately 137 Pre-K-12th grade students and 22 staff each year.

The READ Project will achieve its project goals through three main strategies: 

1. Family & Community Engagement – Provide focused culturally-responsive outreach to increase family engagement within rural schools, and provide trainings to families and community members on literacy improvement processes, parenting models, school attendance importance, and the impacts of trauma on student learning, as well as increased access to trauma recovery support systems. Selected activities focus on family engagement and innovative services that will be responsive to individual student choice. 

2. Student Response to Intervention (RTI) Services – Form a Rural Schools Literacy RTI Team to identify needs, plan interventions, implement RTI plans, and review student performance throughout the school year to achieve our project goals. The tools, resources and activities selected for this project all contribute to a student-centered approach.

3. Professional Development – Train and mentor rural teachers & staff in best practice techniques to improve PreK-12 literacy and build trauma-informed schools. By providing diverse PD and delivering evidence-based instruction and intervention strategies, we can achieve our long-term goals. KIBSD rural schools success will mean that students read at grade level, and staff and families are prepared to respond to crises together as a community.

In response to our rural students’ unique challenges and low academic performance, we have designed our comprehensive literacy plan to be tailored to rural student needs that includes strategies to address chronic absenteeism, strengthen our schools as healthy Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) environments, and provide access to culturally-responsive reading intervention so all students read at grade level and make academic progress.

Additional information about the grant can be read in the State of Alaska Press Release