More than twice as many Western New York children are receiving instruction in reading from the University at Buffalo this summer than have in the past, thanks to a booming literacy-specialist program at the UB Graduate School of Education.
Enrollment in the literacy-specialist master’s degree program nearly doubled in the past two years, due to high demand for skilled literacy teachers. And the number of graduate students who enrolled as instructors in this year’s Summer Literacy Program, offered by UB’s Center for Literacy and Reading Instruction, also more than doubled to 44 graduate students, according to Elizabeth Tynan, clinical assistant professor of learning and instruction and UB’s literacy faculty liaison for the program.
With this increase in graduate students, the UB center was able to service far more schoolchildren.
“Whereas in past years, we typically would have 60 to 80 children in our programs, now we are serving 159 children in grades K-6 at the two sites,” explains Jennifer Schiller, site director of the UB Summer Literacy Program, who says the increase in students largely resulted from the tough economy and trends toward specialization among teachers.