Project will foster early literacy and provide a continuous supply of Raising A Reader books to 200 isolated, at-risk Colorado children, ages 2 to 5, not currently engaged in preschool programs. Research shows that children not reading at grade level by 4th grade (60% of Colorado children) are unlikely to ever catch up. Early intervention is critical.
Studies show that the achievement gap between at-risk children and children from prosperous homes begins to appear at 9 months, expands significantly by age 2 and continues to grow. By age 5, low-income kids are typically a year behind higher income peers. In Colorado, 40% of 4th graders are reading at grade level. Test scores reveal a 29-point gap between higher and lower income children. The odds are stacked against children not reading at grade level. Statistically, they may never catch up.
Raising A Reader (RAR) – Aspen to Parachute has provided programming to 1,600 children for 7 years. Tests from local school districts confirm program impact: Children in western Colorado with RAR experience scores from 3 to 10 percentage points higher on reading readiness than their peers. We now seek to provide intervention for at-risk children whose families have chosen not to engage in or cannot afford formal childcare or preschool programs. These are the highest risk children in the region.
Program will provide 200 isolated, at-risk children with the early literacy development critical for kindergarten readiness and long-term success in school.