By Jack Quinn

On behalf of Read to Succeed Buffalo, and more importantly the children and families we serve in child care, Head Start and the early grades, we applaud Buffalo School Superintendent Kriner Cash in identifying a more "rigorous" early elementary education as part of his six-point plan for reform of the school system.

As we have advocated since our organization was founded nearly a decade ago, it is critically important to ensure the development of appropriate literacy skills in children from prekindergarten through third grade. Early literacy is the foundation on which all learning is built and a leading predictor of college and career success.

A critical element of this approach, though, is to get as many children as possible from poor neighborhoods into pre-K programs, ensure they attend on time, every day, and receive appropriate, individualized instruction that will meet their own unique needs throughout the early grades. Literacy-rich classrooms and data-driven instruction do not just happen. We must first acknowledge that getting people to use data to improve performance is a culture change.

Read to Succeed's track record of accomplishing this speaks for itself in increased vocabulary scores among our program students. We hope to see this accountable, intentional focus replicated over time throughout the district, and stand ready to assist in any way we can.

Jack Quinn

Board Chairman

Read to Succeed Buffalo