State Education Agencies Partner with MetaMetrics to Fight the Summer Reading Loss Epidemic

States Implement Lexile-Based Summer Reading Programs

METAMETRICS, June 20, 2012--MetaMetrics®, developer of the widely adopted Lexile® Framework for Reading, has partnered with over twelve states to implement Lexile- based reading programs to combat summer reading loss.  Last November, Gene Wilhoit, Executive Director of the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), challenged states to commit to eliminating summer loss as an effort to close the achievement gap. The “Chief’s Summer Reading Challenge” raised national awareness of the summer loss epidemic by highlighting compelling research on the importance of personalized reading activities and provided access to a variety of free online resources to support targeted reading. 

The popular book search tool, “Find a Book” is a free resource MetaMetrics has made available to states. It provides the means to match readers with texts, by enabling users to build custom reading lists based on their Lexile level (reading ability) and favorite topics and to check the availability of books at the local library. Find a Book is comprised of more than 125,000 fiction and nonfiction titles, and new books are added every day.

In addition to “Find a Book”, MetaMetrics has also provided supplemental materials to promote and inform parents, educators and librarians about their states’ summer reading programs. As a result of the partnership with MetaMetrics, states received a customized “Find a Book” webpage.  Other support materials included flyers targeted to students, parents and librarians that explain the Lexile Framework, its benefits and how to utilize “Find a Book” during the summer months.  MetaMetrics also provided customized bookmarks, web banners, certificates of participation to reward readers and the Summer Reading Pledge—a new feature to the Lexile.com website. The Summer Reading Pledge enables users to pledge their participation and share their summer reading goals. To date, individuals from over 45 states have pledge to read nearly 20,000 books for summer 2012.

In some cases, summer reading efforts have extended beyond the boundaries of state education agencies. In both Florida and Kentucky, First Ladies Ann Scott and Jane Beshear were at the forefront of promoting the summer reading campaigns in their states. In Illinois and Kansas, Governors Pat Quinn and Sam Brownback took a personal interest in changing the summer reading landscape by actively supporting summer reading campaigns. To view MetaMetrics work with summer reading, visit http://www.lexile.com/chiefs-challenge/state-samples-2012/.

“As we raise expectations for kids and work to ensure they are prepared for college and work, it is great that chiefs can take advantage of opportunities like the Summer Reading Challenge to support achievement,” said CCSSO Executive Director, Gene Wilhoit. “Summer loss is a real issue that contributes to widening achievement gaps and remediation rates. Chiefs are leading the charge to combat this challenge in new and creative ways that cater to the students in their state.”

“We could not be more thrilled about the success of the Chief’s Summer Reading Challenge and states concentrating their efforts to combat summer learning loss,” said MetaMetrics President and Co-founder, Malbert Smith III, Ph.D. “Too many children go home to ‘text-free’ environments, and it is crucial that we provide educators and families with freely available resources that can help to cultivate a love of reading and improve reading ability over the summer months. We applaud the numerous states that recognize the power of Lexile measures and the “Find a Book” resource as they implement their summer reading programs.”

The Lexile Framework is a unique tool for accurately matching readers with text. Unlike other measurement systems, the Lexile Framework evaluates reading ability and growth based on actual assessment results, rather than generalized age or grade levels. Lexile measures help teachers, librarians and parents find books, articles and other resources within a reader’s recommended Lexile range: 100L below to 50L above his or her Lexile measure.

About MetaMetrics
MetaMetrics is focused on improving education for learners of all ages and ability levels. The organization develops scientific measures of academic achievement and complementary technologies that link assessment results with real-world instruction. MetaMetrics’ products and services for reading (The Lexile® Framework for Reading, El Sistema Lexile para Leer), mathematics (The Quantile® Framework for Mathematics), and writing (The Lexile Framework for Writing) provide unique insights about academic ability and the potential for growth, enabling individuals to achieve their goals at every stage of development. Connect with the organization at: http://blog.lexile.com.

About CCSSO
The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) is a nonpartisan, nationwide, nonprofit organization of public officials who head departments of elementary and secondary education in the states, the District of Columbia, the Department of Defense Education Activity, and five U.S. extra-state jurisdictions. CCSSO provides leadership, advocacy, and technical assistance on major educational issues. The Council seeks member consensus on major educational issues and expresses their views to civic and professional organizations, federal agencies, Congress, and the public.