SOURCE: Reading Partners

August 14, 2008 16:00 ET

YES Reading Changes Name to Reading Partners and Announces Outstanding 2007-2008 Results

Over 250% in Reading Gains for Underserved Children Enrolled in Program

MILPITAS, CA--(Marketwire - August 14, 2008) - YES Reading, a Bay Area children's literacy nonprofit, announced its new name today -- READING PARTNERS -- as they reported 250% reading gains for children enrolled in the 2007-2008 program. With just 30 hours of one-on-one tutoring with a Reading Partners volunteer, the average student will advance an entire grade level in reading skills. The key to Reading Partners' success is a structured program integrated with the classroom curriculum that is easy to implement for community volunteers. Reading Partners equips community volunteers, not only to read aloud with a child, but to actually teach reading skills. Teachers and principals are so pleased with the results that they willingly release their students twice a week during regular class time to work with a Reading Partners volunteer.

With 88% of fourth graders in low-income communities reading below grade level, Reading Partners' vision is to equalize the literacy divide between children in low-income communities and their more affluent neighbors. Starting in 1999 at Belle Haven Elementary in East Menlo Park, the program has grown to serve over 500 children in ten high-need elementary schools throughout the greater Bay Area. Results are documented based on pre and post assessments.

Students of the Stanford Graduate School of Business conducted a study measuring Reading Partners' success as compared to three large for-profit tutoring organizations, including Sylvan. The study showed that Reading Partners performed significantly better than two of these organizations and the same as the other. "By comparison, we're a little kid on the block, and yet we're producing results that are better than for-profit organizations, " said Lance Fors, former CEO of Third Wave Technologies and Reading Partners' Board Chair. "We have a group of highly dedicated volunteers and a moral obligation to solve this problem, because we're the best solution out there."

About Reading Partners

Reading Partners, formerly YES Reading, is the Bay Area's fastest growing children's literacy nonprofit, supported by Bay Area corporations and foundations. Reading Partners equips community volunteers to teach reading to struggling young readers, and partners with underserved schools to integrate tutoring into the student's regular school day. Reading Partners has hundreds of trained volunteers working one-on-one with 500 students on the campuses of ten Bay Area schools. Seeking to reach 1000 children in the 2008/2009 school year, Reading Partners is actively recruiting volunteers.

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