The Need

Reading is the gateway to learning; yet right now in Oregon, thousands of children aren’t prepared to meet an educational milestone essential to learning success: third-grade reading. The 2013 Oregon Assessment of Knowledge and Skills shows that 34 percent of Oregon’s third-grade students are not meeting state reading standards. Furthermore, an alarming achievement gap exists among populations of students at greater risk for falling behind.

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Oregon’s successful achievement of its 40-40-20 educational goal will hinge upon improving reading rates of all our students.

Who We Are

The Early Literacy Success Alliance (ELSA) is a coalition of Oregon nonprofit partners and public libraries with proven impact dedicated to providing at-risk children and their families with the access, support, resources and instruction they need to establish a strong foundation of literacy.

Collectively, we serve as valuable allies to the public education system, supporting educators, schools and school districts, and families by applying our mutual skills and resources to help ensure children are prepared for successful futures.

ELSA Members:

  • Black Parent Initiative
  • The Children’s Book Bank
  • Metropolitan Family Service
  • Multnomah County Library
  • Oregon Public Libraries
  • Reach Out and Read Oregon
  • Reading Results
  • The Shadow Project
  • SMART (Start Making A Reader Today)

Our Mission

ELSA aims to:

  • Ignite and inspire community action to identify solutions for improving early literacy.

  • Actively participate in identifying and implementing early literacy solutions in Oregon.

  • Engage and empower Oregon families to help their children succeed through reading.

How We Can Help

ELSA brings to the table an already established network and series of partnerships rooted in research-based methods for improving early literacy in Oregon. Our message is clear: Rather than recreating the wheel to address these issues, we urge Oregon education leaders to take advantage of effective systems like ELSA already in place. Invest, don’t invent.