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Abt Team to Help Dept. of Education Highlight Effective Approaches to Early Literacy

Rockville, Md.  –  Through the newly awarded What Works Clearinghouse Preschool-to-Postsecondary Evidence Synthesis Task Orders (WWC-PESTO) Task Order 4, Abt Global will identify best practices and deliver actionable recommendations and resources that educators can apply to improve the literacy skills of students in kindergarten through third grade.

There is compelling evidence that early reading proficiency is essential for later academic success, yet two-thirds of fourth grade students were not reading at grade level in 2022. As a result of systemic inequities, four-fifths of students from low-income families and students who identify as BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and people of color) were not reading at grade level by the end of fourth grade. Inequities in language and literacy achievement based on race/ethnicity, family income, neighborhood poverty, and linguistic diversity continue to grow. As the body of research on early elementary literacy develops, educators need up-to-date guidance that synthesizes new evidence-based practices and provides them with support for implementing these effective practices.

“Despite decades of research on how to help students learn to read, best practices continue to—and must—evolve to address ongoing literacy challenges,” notes Abt Project Director Brian Freeman. “This project will help teachers understand and apply the latest evidence-based practices that support the language and literacy skills of diverse early elementary students.”

Abt’s work on the $3.75 million WWC-PESTO Task Order 4 contract will complement its ongoing efforts to provide teachers with guidance to support student behavior under the WWC-PESTO Task Order 1 contract. Abt is the first prime contractor to be awarded two task orders under the WWC-PESTO BPA.

About Abt Global
Abt Global is a global consulting and research firm that combines data and bold thinking to improve the quality of people's lives. We partner with clients and communities to advance equity and innovation—from creating scalable digital solutions and combatting infectious disease, to mitigating climate change and evaluating programs for measurable social impact.

Eric Tischler
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