I was fortunate enough to be part of the first annual Teach the World to Read summit last week in Detroit, MI where 40+ entrepreneurs in the education industry from around the country gathered for an interactive discussion around tackling the major literacy issue we are facing in this country. At the heart of the summit was Nora Chahbazi, founder of EBLI (Evidence-based Literacy Instruction), who led the charge with bringing the stakeholders together. Over the past decade, Nora has developed a set of strategies and framework that breaks down the English alphabetic code to teach literacy. Much more about EBLI later…
There were several issues, challenges, ideas, and solutions shared by the participants. What stood out was I found myself sitting at a table with educators, administrators, foundations, and parents, all bringing different perspectives in to the conversation, yet we all had the same goal to dramatically improve literacy education inside and outside of the classroom. What also stood out was the power and energy that resulted in putting 40+ like-minded people together in one room and the different connections that were made among our networks. It almost felt a bit like magic. This “inner circle” of literacy stakeholders is going to do something special and I am honored to be a part of it.
This leads to a bigger point and call to action. What if we can turn this 40 to 400, then 4000, then 40,000 stakeholders completely dedicated to dramatically improving the education system. This includes teachers, administrators, parents, foundations and private sector business owners that can make this a reality. I welcome any person interested in getting involved with this grassroots movement to contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For those out there who do not realize how important literacy is. Let me ask you a simple question – how can we expect society to learn science, math, and other concepts if they can not read, write, or spell? Exactly.