2 in 3 Nashville third-graders are not reading on grade level.
A challenge Nashville has wrestled with for more than two decades.
Why third-grade reading matters:
When a child misses this early milestone, their chances of success are dramatically curtailed
1 in 6 drop out of high school without a diploma
They earn half the annual income of their peers
They have higher incidences of arrest or incarceration
The chance of catching them up when they miss this milestone is very limited. Consequently, these students face a cascading number of other personal and social challenges that travel with them their entire lives.
Creating the Blueprint
We knew there was great work being done in the city and across the nation. Our goal was to unify those efforts and best practices into a cohesive and actionable plan for Nashville.
Convened a 22-member working group
Simultaneously, Mayor’s Childhood Education Working Group focused on how to improve pre-K
We challenged ourselves to think bigger, dig deeper, and come up with a plan to accelerate action
From this, the NLC developed a strategic plan to
double the number of third-graders reading on level by 2025.
What literacy means for Nashville
Literacy begins at birth
How is this different?
For the first time, the city is coming together under a shared framework and outcome to end a social injustice that has persisted for more than two decades.
These recommendations have the full support and commitment of the group to ensure they do not sit on a bookshelf collecting dust. We will publicly report on progress annually, creating a mechanism for an honest public dialogue about what’s working and what’s not.
While many conversations about literacy start and end with K-12 solutions, this report acknowledges the problem is a community challenge. With this comprehensive, birth-through-3rd grade plan, Nashville joins a small group of cities in the country who have adopted a true community literacy approach.
Download the Report
Download the Appendices
Nashville Public Library
Studio Bank and former Chamber Education Report Card Co-Chairman
Nashville Public Library Foundation
Dr. Adriana Bialostozky
Local pediatrician with Vanderbilt Hospital
Cumberland Elementary School
Dr. Monique Felder
Metro Nashville Public Schools
Granberry Elementary School
Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce
Center for Nonprofit Management
Nashville Public Education Foundation
United Way of Metropolitan Nashville
Mayor Barry’s Office
Nashville Public Library
Scarlett Family Foundation
Book ‘Em Nashville
Dollar General Literacy Foundation
Whitney Works Consulting