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Reading Plus Students Receiving Subsidized School Lunch Achieved Significant Reading Proficiency Growth

Elementary, Middle, High

Study Profile

Pupils: 16,094 students who completed two or more InSight reading assessments

Schools: 483

School Districts: 249

Study Inclusion Requirements:

  • Students receiving free or reduced-price lunch
  • Students in grades 2 through 12
  • Students with fall 2018 (pre) and spring 2019 (post) InSight assessment

Purpose of Study:

This report describes the progress achieved by Reading Plus students in
grades 2 through 12 who received free or reduced-price meals at school through
the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) during the 2018-2019 school year. These
are students from households with incomes at or below 185 percent of the
poverty line. Data are reported for all students in this category who completed
the InSight silent reading assessment on at least two occasions, once near the start
of the school year and again during the spring, so that growth over the school year
was measured.

Study Design:

These results show that students receiving free or reduced-price meals at school who engaged in Reading Plus instruction over the course of the 2018-2019 school year significantly increased their capacity to comprehend more complex texts, developed their capacity to understand higher levels of general academic vocabulary, and improved their reading efficiency. Students who completed more Reading Plus practice achieved larger gains than their peers who engaged in little or no Reading Plus instruction. These results replicate previous studies documenting the effectiveness of using Reading Plus with lower-income students. These results also show that students who engaged in more Reading Plus instruction generally increased their reading confidence and their interest in reading. This in turn increases the likelihood that they will continue to use reading as a means to expand their knowledge, to be entertained, and to seek inspiration.