EOU & Morrow County School District Partner for Reading Program


Amid a backdrop of ongoing covid-related learning disruptions, Ignite! Reading, a Zoom-powered K-5 literacy tutoring program, announced today a new partnership with Eastern Oregon University’s College of Education to train teachers how to teach literacy.

Ignite! Reading, which offset pandemic-related learning losses in its recent summer and fall pilot programs, provides foundational skills reading instruction through high-dosage, one-to-one, 15-minute daily virtual tutoring delivered during the school day.

Oregon’s Morrow County School District is also partnering with the new program to help develop a pipeline of well-trained teachers from EOU that will unlock the learning potential of students in local schools.

Using the Ignite! Reading model, the partnership will launch with a 10-week program that begins with intensive teacher training rooted in the science of reading and an evidence-based reading foundational skills curriculum, followed by the implementation of daily tutoring with K-5 students locally, as well as remotely across the country. Ignite! Reading will train EOU’s teachers and provide a practicum experience through the context of virtual tutoring as well as real-time coaching and support to ensure tutors become highly proficient in implementing a Science of Reading-aligned curriculum.

“EOU’s College of Education is very excited about the opportunity to partner with Ignite! Reading to improve literacy outcomes for kids by providing equitable access to high-quality reading instruction,” said Dr. Ronda Fritz, associate professor at Eastern Oregon University’s College of Education. “Embedding hands-on experience tutoring struggling readers using evidence-based practices for intervention will be extremely beneficial to our pre-service teachers and the future students in their classrooms!”

“We are very excited to partner with both EOU and Ignite! Reading to maximize the benefits of this program for our students,” said Erin Stocker, executive director of Elementary Education & Human Resources for the Morrow County School District. “Coming out of Covid and navigating through a much-needed ELA adoption year, we were searching for innovative ways to better support our students. Based on the science of reading, Ignite’s targeted, evidence-based approach will be a great fit for the next generation of students and teachers.”

Ignite! Reading teaches foundational reading skills targeted to where a student falls on the continuum of learning to read, and includes students and tutors reading together to build oral language, vocabulary, and comprehension. Ignite! Reading was incubated by Open Up Resources to develop new approaches to addressing the nation’s early reading challenges. Designed by some of the nation’s top practitioners and educators, Ignite!’s tutoring program has shown remarkable results in student achievement, including helping kids make three weeks of reading progress per week.

Results from Ignite! Reading’s fall pilot at KIPP Bridge Academy in West Oakland showed that:

  • Students made three weeks of reading progress for every week of tutoring they received.
  • 100% of IEP students passed their first progress monitoring assessment.
  • 85% of English Learner students passed their first progress monitoring assessment.
  • 93% of Latinx and 89% of Black students passed their first progress monitoring assessment.