Helping Georgia’s Children Read Right From the Start

More than 2,200 free Bright from the Start credits have been awarded to teachers across Georgia since the Atlanta Speech School’s Rollins Center for Language and Literacy unveiled its new Cox Campus last August.

This professional development website provides teachers from across Georgia—and around the world—with access to the Rollin’s Center’s effective teacher-training program.

Cox Campus provides research-based coursework that builds the capacity of preschool and Pre-K teachers to build young children’s language, vocabulary, and critical thinking skills. As more early educators access these critical competencies, Georgia can close the 30-million word gap and ensure all of our young children stay on a path to reading proficiency by the end of third grade.

The Cox Campus offers six areas of coursework and features more than 50 short videos, depicting preschool and Pre-K classroom instructional methodologies. Development also is underway to include birth through age 3 and kindergarten through third grade. Progressing through the course at their own pace, educators learn:

  • how to “push-in” and “pull-out” language;
  • how to use the TALK strategy to promote meaningful conversations with children;
  • how to tune in to children’s needs and use responsive instruction strategies;
  • how the world of knowledge increases comprehension and how to incorporate informational text in the classroom;
  • how phonological awareness, alphabet knowledge, and concepts of print are necessary skills in preparing children to learn to read; and
  • the importance of emergent writing and how to facilitate children’s use of writing to communicate thoughts, feelings, and ideas.

Educators enrolled in Read Right from the Start can connect with one other to exchange ideas. They can also contact “e-coaches” to ask questions, share experiences, and provide feedback. This online tool was made possible through a grant from the James M. Cox Foundation.


Community Resources

Thanks to a partnership with Neighborhood Nexus, GEEARS also is a source of information that can enable policymakers, investors, and advocates to get a full picture regarding access to services throughout Georgia, as well as to data that demonstrates the need for enhanced resources. Services and resources mapped in the GEEARS Blueprint include

Adult Education programs and Early Education teacher programs,

  • Jumpstart sites,
  • Head Start centers,
  • Public Libraries,
  • Federally Qualified Health Centers,
  • Reach out and Read sites,
  • Home Visiting programs,
  • Licensed Child Care programs, and
  • Georgia Pre-K programs.

Users of this map are also able to explore county level data for 122 data sets relating to children, families, communities, services, and schools.

Watch this video to learn more about the Rollins Center, or contact the Rollins Center for more information about its professional development programs for educators.