1801 E Main St, Rochester, NY 14609

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The new documentary film The Right to Read brings attention to the literacy crisis in the U.S. and why children are struggling to read. According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress, only one-third of fourth-grade students read at proficient levels in 2022. Advocates argue that literacy is one of the greatest civil rights issues of our time.

The Right to Read follows an activist, a first-grade teacher, and two families in their fight to teach their students and children to read and focuses on a disconnect between science and how kids are taught to read. A panel of educators and community members will share different approaches to teaching reading, including the Science of reading and Whole Language, and how they may overlap to strengthen reading instruction and improve literacy rates.

Panel experts

- Demario Strickland, Deputy Superintendent of Teaching and Learning, Rochester City School District
- Tyana Velazquez-Smith, Assistant Vice President for Education, The Strong National Museum of Play
- Ella French, University of Rochester Student; Alumna of East’s Teaching and Leadership Institute; Future Elementary School Teacher
- Carol St. George, Professor and Director of Literacy Teacher Education Program, Warner School of Education
- Jeremy Smith, Executive Director, Freedom Scholars Learning Center

The panel discussion will be moderated by Evan Dawson, host of Connections on WXXI Radio, and will feature opening remarks from Shaun Nelms, vice president for community partnerships at the University of Rochester, professor and the William & Sheila Konar Director of the Center for Urban Education Success at the Warner School of Education; Shelley Jallow, NYS monitor for the Rochester City School District; and Sonya Coleman, vice president of strategic partnerships at Curriculum Associates.

The free event is sponsored by the Warner School of Education's Center for Urban Education Success.

Watch the trailer

Youtube thumbnail for The Right to Read 2023 Trailer

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