Riverside County Office of Education Offers Free Access to Interactive, Early Literacy Program, Footsteps2Brilliance

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Footsteps2Brilliance | Contributed

From pre-reading activities and read-to-you stories to alphabet recognition songs and grammar rules games, the youngest learners in Riverside County now have interactive, new tools right at their fingertips, to boost their early learning and love of reading as a result of a new partnership between the Riverside County Office of Education and Footsteps2Brilliance.

As part of the Literacy by 5th Grade Initiative at the Riverside County Office of Education, the new partnership with the Footsteps2Brilliance platform will plant the seeds of learning for pre-school aged children and nourish the love of reading for elementary students as they learn through play via the free apps available now on smartphones, tablets, and computers, at www.myf2b.com/riverside.

“It is a well-known adage that students who learn to read by 3rd grade will then read to learn for the rest of their lives. But, if students aren’t confident readers, they will struggle to learn as they approach middle school, and become a dropout risk in high school,” said Riverside County Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Edwin Gomez. “The pandemic has only heightened the urgency to focus on reading proficiency, so we are excited to be offering all Riverside County families and school districts a comprehensive literacy support tool that already engages millions of students every day in over 100 districts across the United States.”

With the Footsteps2Brilliance partnership, RCOE is providing free access to the suite of bilingual learning programs for all birth through 5th-grade children and their families in Riverside County. These programs are accessible 24/7 from the smartphones, tablets, and computers that families already own—with or without Internet access. To kick off this initiative, Dr. Gomez is challenging the children of Riverside County to read 3 million words by April 30, 2022, on the Footsteps2Brilliance platform.

“We are honored to be part of Dr. Gomez’s bold vision for early literacy. His initiative will undoubtedly serve as a national model for other communities who understand the impact of early childhood literacy,” said Footsteps2Brilliance CEO, Ilene Rosenthal.

“This is a historic moment for Riverside County as it embarks on its mission to get all students reading proficiently by 5th grade with fun activities to get started before they ever enter a classroom,” said Superintendent of Riverside County Office of Education Deputy Superintendent, Dr. Ruth Pérez. “We encourage all Riverside County families to download these fun and educational programs and use them daily for 15 minutes with their children to accelerate academic achievement.”

The Literacy by 5th Grade Initiative, launched in late 2020 by Riverside County Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Edwin Gomez, strives to promote and expand literacy throughout Riverside County. Strong literacy skills are the foundation of all learning and contribute to a student’s ability to graduate from high school academically and socially prepared for college, the workforce, and civic responsibility. Essential literacy skills include the ability to read, write, listen, speak, research, and represent in order to think critically, create, collaborate, and communicate with empathy in all content areas. Resources available on the Literacy by 5th Grade Initiative website include access to online books, video tutorials for teachers of reading, recordings of RCOE educators reading to preschool-aged students, and more.

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