Read to Succeed

At the foundation of learning is the ability to read. Help set a child on the path to success.

More than HALF of all third graders aren’t reading at grade level. In fourth grade, students transition from “learning to read” to “reading to learn.” If a student isn’t reading at grade level, they fall behind. In fact, they’re four times more likely to drop out. But you have the power to change that.

READING AT GRADE LEVEL

The Women United® Read to Succeed initiative focuses on helping children read at grade level by the end of third grade. Through a partnership with USD 259 – Wichita Public Schools, volunteer reading coaches are matched with at-risk students at local elementary schools. Coaches meet weekly with a student for 30 minutes to listen to them read and provide intervention tactics to help them improve their reading skills. This simple act helps them stay on track in school and life.

Because of the success of the program, we’re testing Read to Succeed in second grade at Gardiner, Franklin and Minneha elementary schools. Our hope is to provide intervention tactics earlier and prevent students from falling further behind.

Adult man helping a third grade boy read from a book in the library.

BECOME A COACH

Both men and women are invited to be reading coaches. There is no financial commitment to be a coach. Free training is provided. You can pick the school you serve at and the day of the week you want to coach. When you invest your time as a reading coach, you’re investing in the life of a child and the future of our workforce.

Check back soon for information about volunteer opportunities for the 2022 – 2023 school year. 

2019 – 2020 SCHOOL YEAR 

School house icon.
21 Elementary Schools Served
Orange icon of an adult woman reading with a boy
410 students met weekly with 427 volunteer reading coaches

THIRD GRADE RESULTS

Blue icon of a little girl with pigtails reading a book
Catching Up to Peers

On average, Read to Succeed students began third grade reading 6.5 words per minute behind non-Read to Succeed students. By the end of the school year, they surpassed their peers by half a word per minute!

Pink icon of a little girl in a graduation cap and gown.
115 Third Grade Graduates

115 third grade students achieved on grade reading levels and “graduated” from the program!

Average Words per Minute Gained Weekly

At third grade, an increase of 1 word per minute is considered realistic growth. 1.5 words per minute is considered ambitious growth.

Avg. Weekly Growth
(Words per Minute)
Student Count*
All USD 259 Third Graders 1.07 3,221
Non-Read to Succeed Students 1.04 2,902
Read to Succeed Students 1.28 319

*Students with both beginning and ending scores. Data extracted from the FastBridge 05/27/2020 and assumed 30 weeks between testing dates. 

SECOND GRADE RESULTS

Average Words per Minute Gained Weekly

At second grade, an increase of 1.5 word per minute is considered realistic growth. 2 words per minute is considered ambitious growth.

Avg. Weekly Growth
(Words per Minute)
Student Count*
All USD 259 Second Graders 1.33 3,132
Non-Read to Succeed Students 1.32 3,088
Read to Succeed Students 1.72 44

*Students with both beginning and ending scores. Data extracted from the FastBridge 05/27/2020 and assumed 30 weeks between testing dates. 

PARTNERS

Special thanks to USD 259 – Wichita Public Schools for partnering with Women United for this initiative.

Partner USD 259 - Wichita Public Schools
Adult woman meeting with a third grade girl to help her learn to read.

QUESTIONS?

For more information, email R2S@unitedwayplains.org or call us at (316) 267‑1321 and ask for the Read to Succeed manager.

OUR FOCUS

Our focus is on healtheducationfinancial stability and basic needs—the building blocks for a good quality of life and a strong community. Click below to learn more about what we’re doing, the programs we invest in and our lasting impact in each area.