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The Texas State Literacy Plan Overview

The goal of the Texas State Literacy Plan (TSLP) is to ensure that every Texas child is strategically prepared for the literacy demands of college and career by high school graduation. To achieve this goal, the plan centers on the integration and alignment of early language and pre-literacy skills for children 0 to school entry and on reading and writing instruction for students in kindergarten through grade 12. The TSLP is sensitive to the diversity of students in the state, including the significant percentage of students who are English learners. The TSLP outlines practices and systems in schools, homes, and early childhood education settings that support successful literacy development and college and career readiness. The guiding principles include the following:

  • Leadership teams guide and support the implementation of the TSLP.
     
  • Valid and reliable assessments, including the use of assessments that are appropriate for English learners, are used to gather information. Data analysis informs all levels of decision making.
     
  • Prior to school entry, children’s literacy-related development is supported through age-appropriate services and resources provided to families in various settings, which may include homes; Head Start, Title I, and private or public preschools; pediatric clinics; public libraries; Preschool Programs for Children with Disabilities (PPCDs); and other early childhood education sites. The Texas Infant, Toddler, and Three-Year-Old Early Language Guidelines and Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines (revised in 2008) provide the frameworks informing instruction for children age 0 to school entry.
  • Systematic, explicit, and coherent instruction using evidence-based instructional materials and practices in reading and writing is provided following the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills in English and Spanish, the English Language Proficiency Standards across all grade levels and content areas, and the College and Career Readiness Standards for every school-age student.
    Effective instruction, differentiated based on assessed needs, is provided to all learners through a response to intervention framework. Classroom teachers, interventionists, and specialists in dyslexia, gifted and talented education, special education, and bilingual and English as a second language programs coordinate to meet the diverse needs of all learners.
  • Achievement goals are clearly defined, and progress is monitored at every age/grade level.
  • Sustainability requires the ongoing evaluation of effectiveness and the building of capacity to continue and expand practices and systems that are working well to improve literacy outcomes. This includes tracking progress toward literacy goals, developing leadership, monitoring and supporting teaching and learning, providing ongoing professional development, leveraging funding sources, and making decisions through the use of comprehensive data analysis.
  • Professional development is based on student and campus data, aligned to campus initiatives, and focused on specific outcome goals. Instructional staff and campus leaders should have professional growth opportunities that are differentiated according to their roles and needs, including ongoing support to implement and refine practices learned. Professional development is not limited to traditional workshops, but also can include coaching, book studies, peer observation, collaborative planning, and other job-embedded formats.

 

Framework

The Texas State Literacy Plan is organized into a framework of six essential components: Leadership, Assessment, Standards-based Instruction, Effective Instructional Framework, Reporting and Accountability, and Sustainability (LASERS). Increasing capacity at the state, district, campus, and classroom levels in these six areas is necessary to ensure the success of the next generation of college- and career-ready Texans.

Leadership at the state, district, organization, campus, site, and classroom levels is critical to the success of children in Texas. At every age/grade level, leadership teams meet regularly to examine student performance data, determine what students need to be successful, and identify what adults need to learn to ensure that success. The teams create a plan of action, implement the plan, and evaluate its results.

 

Assessment provides the foundation for student data, which in turn guides decision making at every level. Measures must be valid, reliable, and appropriate for the age, language background, and other unique characteristics of each learner. Assessments serve to provide data for identifying students at risk of difficulties with literacy, determining specific instructional needs, monitoring progress toward literacy goals, and evaluating the success of the learning program.

 

Standards-based Instruction uses evidence-based materials and practices that align to the Texas Infant, Toddler, and Three- Year-Old Early Learning Guidelines; Texas Prekindergarten Guidelines (revised in 2008); and Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for language arts and reading (in both English and Spanish). Providing a solid foundation of literacy instruction based on state guidelines and standards is central to developing well-prepared Texans.

 

Effective Instructional Framework is built on a response to intervention model, providing a foundation of high quality literacy instruction to all students and additional literacy instruction for students who demonstrate a need for more support.

 

Reporting and Accountability involves sharing information to facilitate continuity of instruction and services for learners, as well as holding individuals and the school as a whole accountable for student literacy development.

 

Sustainability is the ultimate key to ensuring all students leave school as college- and career-ready Texans. Leveraging funding resources, evaluating implementation, monitoring and supporting teaching and learning, providing effective professional development, and focusing decision-making on data are necessary steps in assuring sustainability.

 

Organization

Levels

The Texas State Literacy Plan is designed for use at the site/campus level and is divided into three age/grade-level groups.

 
Components

Each age/grade-level group of the TSLP is then divided into six components: Leadership, Assessment, Standards-based

Instruction, Effective Instructional Framework, Reporting and Accountability, and Sustainability (LASERS).

 
Each component of the TSLP includes:
  1. Summary Statement:  A summary statement for each of the LASERS components is provided before its Implementation Guide in each of the age/grade levels.
  2. Action Steps: Each component of the TSLP is comprised of a set of key Action Steps at each age/grade level grouping (Age 0 to School Entry, Kindergarten through Grade 5, and Grades 6 through 12). While actions at the district, regional, and state levels are necessary for the TSLP to be a cohesive whole, the actions in this phase are designed to support implementation in classrooms and by site/campus-based leadership teams. These Action Steps are numbered but are not meant to be implemented in sequential order.
  3. Implementation Status Ratings: Implementation Status Ratings (see chart below) are provided for each Action Step.

    Implementation Status Ratings

    A
    Planning Implementation

    B
    Initial Implementation

    C
    Full Implementation with Fidelity

    D
    Reflective Sustainability

    Adapted from Fixsen, Naoom, Blase, Friedman, & Wallace, 2005.

  4. Implementation Indicators: These Indicators further explain the Action Step by describing what practices and systems are being planned or taking place at the different levels of implementation. Sites and campuses use the Indicators as a guide during self-evaluation and to develop plans of action when implementing Action Steps of the TSLP.

  5. Sample Evidence: Sample Evidence for the implementation of Action Steps is listed below the Implementation IndicatorsThe samples might include agendas, sign-in sheets, or lesson plans. These samples are intended to serve as guides and should not be considered an exhaustive list.

 

Texas State Literacy Plan Resource Website (TSLPResource.org)

The website has the following tools to support implementation:

Implementation Inventory
The Implementation Inventory serves as a starting point for taking stock of current literacy practices and identifying strengths and challenges. The inventory also leads users to monitor progress and change over time. It consists of six LASERS components, each containing specific Action Steps.

Implementation Maps
When a site/campus-based leadership team completes the Implementation Inventory for a LASERS component, the site or campus receives a customized Implementation Map for that component. The map provides sites and campuses with a visual representation of the level of implementation they have indicated for each LASERS component of the TSLP. They can use the map to prioritize their work in fully implementing the TSLP.

Resource Library
The Resource Library contains a rich repository of materials and links that provide support in implementing the TSLP. Users can also create their own resource libraries using these materials.

 

Texas State Literacy Plan Online Course

The course consists of modules for each LASERS component plus a module focused on the process for implementing a TSLP Action Step. The component modules explain each Action Step and provide scenarios, examples, resources, and sample next steps that sites and schools might take when working on each given Action Step. The process module provides guidance on one approach to working on an Action Step at the site or campus level.

 

Literacy Lines

Integration and alignment of language development and literacy instruction along the continuum of age 0 through grade 12 is critical to student success and is best ensured by coordination at the district level. Districts are encouraged to form Literacy Lines composed of feeder patterns of campuses and the early childhood education sites who serve the age 0 to school age population to facilitate and ensure effective literacy development.

 

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