CCSSO to Host Literacy Summit to Drive Improvement for Nation's Students

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Washington, D.C. (December 23, 2019) – The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) will gather state chiefs, experts in reading, and others on Jan. 23 for a national summit focused on effective approaches to improve the literacy skills for all students and the important role states must play. 

Through the National Summit on Literacy in Washington, D.C., CCSSO aims to enhance the collective understanding of state-level strategies to improve literacy skills for students -- with a focus on students whose reading ability is below their grade level.

The latest results from the Nation’s Report Card show that many of our nation’s young people are struggling in the area of literacy. Improving literacy levels requires a multi-prong approach, and through robust roundtable discussions the summit will explore the need for high-quality instructional materials and aligned professional learning, alignment with early childhood education, as well as the need to support effective teacher preparation programs.

“State education leaders recognize the urgency of improving literacy for all kids. This convening will bring forward the strong existing research-base on the issue and surface effective approaches underway in states to find ways to bridge the gap between research, policy, and practice and drive positive change,” said Carissa Moffat Miller, CCSSO’s executive director.

This one-day event is the beginning of a concentrated effort for CCSSO, with continued discussions at CCSSO’s Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C. this Spring, and the ultimate goal of creating a playbook outlining the most important state levers to engage to lead to meaningful gains from students.

State chiefs from Wyoming, Mississippi, District of Columbia, Nebraska, South Carolina, North Dakota, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, Vermont and Rhode Island are expected to participate in the discussion along with national literacy experts and other education advocates.

Reporters must register to attend by emailing



The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) is a nonpartisan, nationwide, nonprofit organization of public officials who head departments of elementary and secondary education in the states, the District of Columbia, the Department of Defense Education Activity, Bureau of Indian Education, and five U.S. extra-state jurisdictions. CCSSO provides leadership, advocacy, and technical assistance on major educational issues. The Council seeks member consensus on major educational issues and expresses their views to civic and professional organizations, federal agencies, Congress, and the public. 

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