Illiteracy in Rhode Island is a Crisis!
“38.5% of Rhode Island elementary and middle school students are proficient in English language arts (ELA).” (Source: 2019 RICAS State Assessments) That means the illiteracy rate is 61.5%!
Read about a student’s literacy journey.
A. is a young adult, who recognized it’s never too late to claim his right to literacy.
It took a lot for him to gather the courage to leave the house and begin tutoring with RITES teacher, Deborah Phillips (pictured here, working on their Wilson reading and spelling lesson).
While he receives some financial assistance from RITES, that money will run out well before A. meets his goal of being able to read at a level that could lead to job opportunities. Here is how RITES has helped, in his own words:
“My reading has improved since I started at RITES in May of 2018. Since graduating from High School in 2013, I have been at home most of the time. I was shy, and uncomfortable with new people. I am happy to come to tutoring because my reading is improving. I used to play video games but was not able to read the words. Now I can do that. I don’t get lost anymore, because I can read the street signs. I feel comfortable with my tutor, Deb. I hope to go to a trade school, so I can get a job that I like.”
A. has made real progress in learning to read. Here is what his RITES teacher, Deborah, had to say:
“What is interesting is his desire to learn the meanings of words. Ex: the word was “prevent.” I explained that pre- can be a prefix and gave its meaning. He thought for a minute and asked, “ Is that like ‘preview’?” He does this all the time now, making connections. A. has gained so much self-confidence, as well. He has a sense of humor that is really pretty funny and clever. It really is a pleasure working with him and seeing him grow as a person, as well as a reader.”
But, that all comes to an end unless you help keep the momentum going.
A. has a ways to go before he has the mastery he needs to achieve his aspirations. He comes to the learning center twice a week so that he can learn faster and more effectively. Soon, his funding will run out. We can’t continue to provide the necessary tutoring for A. until we have the funds to do so. Your donation can help this vulnerable, motivated, young man. Please don’t let him experience a gap in instruction, lose momentum, and fall through the cracks into failure.