2012-13 Program Results: 94% of SSL Students Improve Reading Skills

Super Stars Literacy releases outstanding 2012-13 program evaluation results: 94% of SSL students make literacy gains; 40% accelerate their literacy growth toward proficiency!

During the 2012-13 program year, Super Stars Literacy provided extended learning time literacy and socio-emotional intervention programming to K-2nd grade students at nine school sites in Oakland, Hayward, Antioch and Richmond. At these school sites, 96% of the students are children of color, 80% qualify for free/reduced price lunch due to low family incomes, and 49% are English Language Learners. SSL students received fifteen hours per week of out-of-school-time programming, as well as school day intervention services coordinated with their classroom teachers, and family engagement activities. SSL also successfully completed our first year as an AmeriCorps grantee. Collectively, our AmeriCorps staff members completed 4,450 training hours, an average of 160 hours per member. We benefited from the support of 109 volunteers, who provided 3479 hours of service.

We are very pleased with the progress our students made towards our outcome goals, particularly considering the literacy deficiencies with which they began the program, as well as the challenges and stressors they face in their everyday lives.

Outcome Goals and Results:

Literacy Improvement: Super Stars Literacy students who attend program regularly (at least 135 days during the school year) will demonstrate accelerated growth equivalent to at least one academic year’s progress on essential literacy indicators. 

Results: 94% of students made literacy gains, with 40% achieving accelerated growth (growth exceeding that which would be expected for an average student over the course of a school year). Considering the significant deficiencies with which our students began the program and the personal challenges they face, we are very pleased with their progress. Notably, 68% of SSL’s kindergarten students exceeded national norms in phonemic awareness (the ability to associate letters with their appropriate sounds).

Socio-Emotional Skill Development: Super Stars Literacy students who attend program regularly will demonstrate at least one level of growth in one or more essential skill areas of social-emotional development (Empathy, Impulse Control, and Conflict Resolution), as measured by the DRDP (Desired Results Developmental Profile). 

Results: 87% of students demonstrated growth in one or more areas of social emotional skill development. Half of the students ended the year scoring in the highest levels of the DRDP assessment.

Comments from our stakeholders:

School-day teachers:

“I hope this program will be offered again next school year because it has helped a lot with my students’ reading skills, especially with their fluency skills.”
“The support students receive during the one-on-one and small group instruction really helped my students improve their literacy skills.”
“The SSL students show self-confidence and pride in their achievements. They are able to work together, and they show more self control.”
“The students in this program made significant gains in both decoding and comprehension.”


“My son feels good about being able to read and understand the text. Before, he used to get angry and frustrated with reading.”
“My child is more enthusiastic about going to school and socializing with other students.”
“My son has made improvement in his social skills and ability to work in a team.”

Student success story:

At the beginning of the year, Adrian received a zero in every section of the DIBELS assessment. Raised by a deaf uncle, he never had the opportunity to develop oral language or basic reading development skills. Adrian could not name any letters, understand or answer simple questions, or control his impulsive behavior. Anytime there was a disagreement with another student, his first response was to hit someone, or start screaming and crying. During opening circle, Adrian could not sit still for even a few minutes and would be dancing around out of his seat and touching other children around him. If it wasn’t his turn to participate in a particular activity, he would get extremely upset. During centers, he was often throwing things and distracting others. He could not even write his name on his papers, let alone read even the lowest level of books.

However, in just a few short months, Adrian started progressing into the student we had hoped he would be, and has developed socio-emotional skills that have made a significant difference in his behavior. He seeks out an adult to talk to them when he is upset, and will tell his friends that he wants to play when he is feeling left out. During circle time, Adrian reads along with the Newsletter, participates during sharing time, and is able to read the majority of the sight words. If his name isn’t drawn to participate in a particular activity, he is able to say “Next time!” rather than getting mad. During centers, he tries very hard to finish his work and sit quietly at his stations. At the silent reading center, he is one of the few students who can remain seated the entire time, and he often finishes three or four books. And even though at times he still tries to get his Group Leader’s attention by shouting her name rather than raising his hand, it is simply to ask if he can read a book to her.

 Adrian has succeeded in more ways than one. Although his literacy assessment scores are still considered high risk, they do not represent all the success he has had in the classroom and with his peers. His Group Leader commented, “Seeing a student progress in this way is truly the best gift an educator can ever receive!”