Children’s Literacy Initiative (CLI) provides teachers of grades pre-k to 3 with extensive professional development in early literacy instruction. Over a 3-year period, teachers could receive as much as 186 hours of professional development. Coaches provide workshops, classroom modeling, observation, and feedback focusing on vocabulary, print concepts, phonics, comprehension, and writing. Small group and individualized instruction are used to differentiate instruction for struggling learners. Selected teachers in each school are given extra coaching and then serve as resources for peers.
A large evaluation of the Children’s Literacy Initiative found positive effects on GRADE early reading measures, averaging an effect size of +0.10 across two cohorts that had CLI for two or three years. This qualifies CLI for the ESSA “Strong” category.