Teaching Matters Receives $700,000 Grant To Launch Early Literacy Program Online

by Editorial Team


NEW YORK, NY, March 23, 2020The Robin Hood Foundation, a grantmaking organization working to alleviate poverty in New York City, granted education nonprofit Teaching Matters $700,000 to create and pilot virtual coaching in reading for 1st – 2nd grade teachers and students as a new component of its successful Early Reading Matters program. The award will be distributed over the course of two years involving development and ultimately implementation in a charter school network in the Bronx.

This funding will provide pivotal advancement in early literacy by training teachers and investing in students at the critical K-2 level. Teaching Matters is a New York City-based organization dedicated to increasing teacher effectiveness to improve student success. Its Early Reading Matters program supports elementary schools to close the reading gap by providing rigorous, targeted and sustained support to teachers to impact their student’s reading capacity.

Early Reading Matters focuses its efforts on improved reading skills by investing in early childhood teachers. Research shows that children who receive three consecutive years of effective instruction experience permanent gains. This particular literacy initiative gives educators research-proven practices, regular coaching, and step-by-step guided methods to move young readers towards markers appropriate for each grade level. Over 6,000 first and second graders from high-need schools participated in Early Reading Matters in 2017-2018 and gained an average of 5 reading levels by the end of the school year.

The Robin Hood Foundation grant allows Teaching Matters to build on the success of Early Reading Matters by introducing online modules.

“Teaching Matters is excited to bring our Early Reading Matters program to the next level by incorporating online and computer-based components,” said Lynette Guastaferro, CEO of Teaching Matters. “We envision a New York City where every student has equitable access to qualified teachers, current technology and quality education, and this funding brings us one step closer to that goal.”

The Robin Hood grant will be used to create a blended online learning series for English Language Arts teachers, providing face-to-face and virtual teacher support, and creating technology-based personal learning centers for use by 1st-2nd grade students. This will benefit nearly 800 children in the charter school network.

About Teaching Matters

Teaching Matters is a national professional learning organization dedicated to increasing teacher effectiveness, a critical factor in student success. For the last 25 years, Teaching Matters has partnered with public schools to help teachers and school leaders develop the skills they need to teach well, lead their peers and drive school-wide improvement. The education nonprofit strives to close the opportunity gap of a radically unequal education system for underserved children. Teaching Matters has offered year-round, in-depth programming to over 1,500 schools, 35,000 teachers and 600,000 students.

About the Robin Hood Foundation

Robin Hood is New York City’s largest poverty-fighting organization. We provide 200 of the best nonprofits with financial, real estate, and management support. Each year, they reduce barriers to opportunities for nearly half a million New Yorkers. From keeping more than 200,000 New Yorkers from going hungry, to helping more than 10,000 of our neighbors secure jobs to helping nearly 11,000 remain stably housed and off the streets. The programs Robin Hood funds are often the first of their kind, and serve as demonstration models to identify what works before being replicated in other cities. For more information, go to robinhood.org.