UA to Host Alabama Literacy Summit

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Researchers from Florida State University’s Regional Education Laboratory Southeast will showcase innovative materials for the teaching of K-3 literacy during the Alabama Literacy Summit, Thursday, April 20, at The University of Alabama.

Four literacy researchers, including Dr. Barbara Foorman, director of the REL-SE, and Francis Eppes, professor of education at Florida State University, will share videos and resources for supporting teachers’ teaching of K-3 reading.

A K-3 Literacy Walk-Through app and guides for creating and sustaining summer reading camps will also be discussed. Their presentations will also include the tools and research supporting the development of the materials.

The summit will begin at 8:30 a.m. at the Bryant Conference Center on the UA campus. The event is geared toward teacher educators, reading coaches and K-12 administrators. Admission is free.

The REL-SE was created as part of an Institute of Education Sciences grant that requires the group to offer workshops to share research and materials with practitioners.

Dr. Carol Donovan, co-director of the UA Belser-Parton Literacy Center, is on the governing board for the project and helped coordinate the UA Summit.

Donovan said the most prevalent topics in literacy education remain best practices for reading, particularly in organizing school days to maximize time for instruction and reading books that interest students to build capacity for more difficult texts.

Foorman and her colleagues have created high-quality materials based on current research that will have high utility for supporting teachers’ continued learning and developing expertise in early reading instruction,” Donovan said.

The Belser-Parton Literacy Center exists to serve local, state and national communities with the central focus on children and how their literacy needs can best be served through excellent teaching and meaningful research. The center’s areas of focus include community outreach, teacher education, and research and scholarship. The center has partnerships with schools in Tuscaloosa and Pickens County to provide professional development, books and other literacy resources to teachers, and interactive programs for students and parents.


Dr. Carol Donovan, 205/348-3335,


David Miller, UA media relations, 205/348-0825,

The University of Alabama, the state’s oldest and largest public institution of higher education, is a student-centered research university that draws the best and brightest to an academic community committed to providing a premier undergraduate and graduate education. UA is dedicated to achieving excellence in scholarship, collaboration and intellectual engagement; providing public outreach and service to the state of Alabama and the nation; and nurturing a campus environment that fosters collegiality, respect and inclusivity.