Developing literacy skills is a collaborative responsibility of all educators. Instruction should stimulate and extend the communication and critical thinking skills that allow students to develop resiliency and positive attitudes as they grow into effective readers, writers, communicators and life-long learners. The Pennsylvania Department of Education embraces effective literacy teaching and learning through a system that includes a comprehensive, research-based approach that supports student achievement.
The Pennsylvania Standards Aligned System (SAS) (http://www.pdesas.org/ ) is a collaborative product of research and good practice that identifies six distinct elements which, if utilized together, will provide schools and districts a common framework for continuous school and district enhancement and improvement. Much research has been conducted regarding what makes a great school. There are many intangible components; however, research supports the notion that great schools and school systems tend to have six common elements that ensure Student Achievement: Clear Standards, Fair Assessments, Curriculum Framework, Instruction, Materials & Resources, and Interventions.
The Pennsylvania Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening Standards and the proposed Composition and Literature Standards describe what students should know and be able to do; the standards increase in complexity and sophistication as students progress through school and provide the targets for instruction and student learning that are essential for success in all academic areas. Educators are encouraged to consider discipline-specific standards together with the Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening standards when creating a curriculum that ensures cross-curricular integration. Collaboratively, all educators can address literacy needs by aligning instruction with the Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening Standards.
For specific information that addresses the eligible content found on Pennsylvania Statewide System of Assessment (PSSA) for reading, see the Assessment Anchor Toolkit.