Right to Read: Literacy Acceleration in an Urban High School

Right to Read: Literacy Acceleration in an Urban High School Hudson was tired of seeing our New York City public school students entering 9th grade reading far below grade level and struggling on tests, assignments and with post-secondary endeavors. As an unscreened public high school in Manhattan, we welcome students from all five boroughs of New York City — 90% of our students receive free or reduced lunch. We are 88% Black and Latino and 68% male. Students were entering our high school reading at 4th grade level, resistant to reading and scoring low on state and city tests. We decided that it was time prioritize literacy as our school-wide instructional focus, and created an original literacy acceleration program for all students, steeped in social justice, called Right to Read. The program offers age- and culturally appropriate materials to develop high-level literacy in all students. The program, now in its second year, is a 4-year course required for all students at Hudson.

Melissa Balsamello, English Teacher Leader, Hudson High School of Learning Technologies; Jennifer Gunn, R2R Creator/Teacher, Hudson High School of Learning Technologies