One of the most important decisions educators make is what reading curriculum to adopt. The consequences of that decision can have profound implications for students. Adopting a curriculum not based on the science of reading is likely to produce a generation of poor readers. Education Week recently reviewed a report from EDReports that reported two of the most commonly adopted reading curricula failed to meet their new review standards. The review covered both K-2 and grades 3-8 for Fountas and Pinnell Classroom and Units of Study from the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project. Neither program met expectations for text quality or alignment to standards. In 2019, EdWeek Research Center reported that 44% of K-2 early reading and special education teachers used Fountas and Pinnell’s Leveled Literacy Intervention, a companion intervention to Fountas and Pinnell Classroom.
Additionally, it was reported that 16% of teachers used Units of Study for Teaching Reading. Approximately 60% of K-2 and special education students are taught reading with curricula that do not meet standards for reading instruction. This is distressing given the importance of early reading on the educational trajectory for students.
Kurtz, H., Lloyd, S., Harwin, A., Chen, V., & Furuya, Y. (2020). Early Reading Instruction: Results of a National Survey. Editorial Projects in Education.