From 2019 to 2021, the LEAD Academy pilot program provided literacy skills building to help address one of the most critical education needs among girls in Winston-Salem: achieving grade level reading.
In partnership with Winston-Salem Prep, we launched LEAD Academy to provide girls with academic support, reading coaches and a balanced literacy program tailored to their needs. We are proud that our efforts helped 87 girls to improve their reading and writing skills.
LEAD Academy provided over 2,600 hours of literacy support, helped to increase reading skills among 80% of participants, and provided a total of 218 girls with uplifting and culturally relevant books, to spark and encourage a love of reading.
What’s Next for LEAD’s Literacy Support Initiatives
Operating LEAD Academy gave our LEAD Girls programs the opportunity to incorporate an academic support component alongside our leadership curriculum. Our girls’ experience in LEAD Academy helped us identify ways to more fully support our participants’ academic needs, starting with literacy skills building. Moving forward, LEAD Girls will use the lessons learned from the LEAD Academy project to:
- Create opportunities for girls to access and sustain their participation in existing academic support programs
- Identify and improve access to culturally relevant resources that our partner schools can use to build girls’ literacy skills
- Develop academic support components that we incorporate into our leadership programs
We are grateful to our partners, donors and all who supported our LEAD Academy pilot program. We thank Winston-Salem Prep for their partnership, the United Way of Forsyth County for providing start-up and operational funding, The Women’s Fund of Winston-Salem for program operational funding, and our many individual donors whose support made LEAD Academy possible.