APS to focus on K-1 reading program

ALPENA — Meaghan Gauthier, director of curriculum, instruction, assessment/state and federal programs for Alpena Public Schools, announced during Tuesday’s curriculum and technology committee meeting that a bid was received for the K-1 summer reading program.

A request for proposal was sent out in December to bid on the K-1 summer reading program to reduce summer slide of reading for those students.

“We only had one put a bid in and that was the Kids Read Now summer reading program,” Gauthier said. “They actually submitted two bids with two different subscriptions plans.”

The two subscriptions plans were the basic plan and the standard plan. The basic plan included 550 subscriptions with a 1 percent discount, and would be $49.50 per subscription. The yearly fee for the basic plan is $27,225. The standard plan also would include 550 subscriptions with a 1 percent discount, and would be $69.30 per subscription. The yearly fee totals $38,115.

“I am recommending that we accept the basic plan,” Gauthier said. “It will cover all our K-1 students. If not every student volunteers to be a part of the program, then we could offer the other slots to second grade students as well.”

Gauthier said as a result of the bid, Kids Read Now has given the school district three years at the cost of one.

“That was something I was not anticipating,” she said. “There is a foundation grant that covers $10 per student of the standard plan, which would get us a more advanced subscription for the cost for three years.”

Gauthier has applied for the foundation grant and if the school district is awarded the grant, she will switch to the upgraded plan because it offers more contact with parents and greater data analysis.

Gauthier will be bringing the bid to the board of education during Monday’s meeting with a recommendation from the CT committee.

The program will be funded by the Section 35a early literacy grant.

Julie Goldberg can be reached via email at jgoldberg@thealpenanews.com or by phone at 358-5688.