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The UF Lastinger Center for Learning and partners from the UF College of Education and UNC-Chapel Hill FPG Child Development Institute received a $1 million award, funded entirely by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), to develop, pilot, evaluate and scale the Targeted Reading Instruction (TRI) App. This award is part of the Leveraging Evidence to Accelerate Recovery Nationwide Network (LEARN Network) launched by IES this month. 

TRI has been evaluated through numerous IES-funded studies and is one of only a few reading programs that has shown significant impacts on decoding and reading comprehension for early elementary students. The award titled Scaling Targeted Reading Instruction (TRI) to Serve Students Impacted by COVID-19: Digital Implementation of an Effective Intervention will incorporate TRI activities and strategies into the UF Lastinger Center’s Flamingo Reading App, allowing for more accurate, flexible and efficient implementation to make personalized reading instruction as easy as the click of a button. The Flamingo Reading App is the only platform on the market that provides students with explicit and systematic synchronous instruction rooted in research-based reading practices.

Accelerating reading skills emerged as a priority following the COVID-19 pandemic. A promising response to improving reading achievement is to use a high-dosage tutoring model. Integrating TRI’s well-tested methods into the Flamingo Reading App will expand opportunities for tutors and other educators to effectively and efficiently use the highest-quality online literacy resources and interactive lessons to promote students’ rapid growth in reading.

In addition to providing professional learning opportunities for 30 tutors to support reading instruction in 15 elementary schools across Florida and North Carolina, the project will directly serve 400 students and aims to scale the App to effectively serve thousands of students in the future.