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Tuesday, December 18, 2012 - Unique Reading Recovery program aims to combat literacy issues
By Victoria Lipscomb, media relations intern

Oakland University is devoted to helping students with reading and writing disabilities through Reading Recovery, a program that develops teacher leaders.

Reading Recovery is an international program that targets first grade students on multiple continents. The program focuses on the professional development of teachers to help serve students that have extreme difficulty learning to read and write.

“The services of the Reading Recovery Center is one way that Oakland University can reach out and help young children who have significant early learning difficulties with literacy in Michigan,” said Dr. Mary Lose, director of the Reading Recovery Center at Oakland University.

Oakland is one of only 19 universities nationwide, and the only university in the state, to serve as a Reading Recovery university training center. 

Since its establishment in 1991, the Reading Recovery program has trained more than 1,215 teachers and served nearly 99,050 Michigan first grade students.

University faculty train and professionally develop Reading Recovery teacher leaders through an extensive year-long training program. Currently there are 15 Reading Recovery teacher leaders in Michigan. In turn, these leaders train new Reading Recovery teachers at 13 Regional Reading Recovery sites throughout Michigan.

  • Bloomfield Hills Public Schools
  • Detroit Schools
  • Dowagiac Union Schools
  • Eastern Upper Peninsula ISD
  • Genesee ISD
  • Jackson County ISD
  • Kalamazoo Public Schools
  • Oakland Regional
  • Oakland University-Grand Rapids
  • Port Huron Area School District
  • Portage Public Schools
  • South Lyon Community Schools
  • Walled Lake Consolidated Schools

Each Reading Recovery teacher provides individual lessons to four first grade students. Students meet with a Reading Recovery teacher for a 30-minute lesson each day for 12 to 20 weeks. By the end of the session, students should progress to average levels of their classmates in reading and writing.

In 2010, the Reading Recovery Center at OU received a $4 million grant over the course of five years (2010-2015) to provide training for 250 certified teachers in Michigan elementary schools.

“Oakland has benefited from the grant by expanding Reading Recovery services to schools, teachers and kids throughout Michigan,” said Dr. Lose. “The grant has permitted us to establish one new reading recovery site in Dowagiac.”

Every three years, Reading Recovery holds an international institute. The next international institute will take place in July 2013 in Sydney, Australia. Dr. Lose is scheduled to speak at the institute to represent Oakland University.

For more information on the Reading Recovery Center at Oakland and its services, visit the website at