Greetings from the Oklahoma Literacy Association! I am honored to serve as chair for the 2020-2021 school year. Even with the unusual circumstances we are all facing, OKLA’s mission remains focused on promoting literacy and a love of reading all across Oklahoma.
What does that look like this school year? It is certainly different from every school year I have witnessed. Our teachers are working to help students in countless ways using a wide variety of methods: virtual, face-to-face, videos, phone calls, texts, or socially distant conversations using paper and/or digital formats. Teaching has always been a complex, challenging calling; now we are required every single day to find new ways to help our students. Just like there is no one way to teach reading, there’s not one specific approach for our education systems and their families. Some of these methods will endure and others may be less successful. Whatever your approach, it is gratifying to see the commitment, patience, creativity, and leadership of our teachers, students, parents, and other support personnel.
Since we began this school year, I have been very proud of how our educators have worked to adjust and adapt so learning can continue. OKLA wants to remain a source of support and encouragement as you negotiate this school year. A famous quote from Mr. Rogers advises children to look for the helpers in challenging times. Thank you to all these helpers who are working diligently to keep literacy alive and well in Oklahoma. OKLA hopes to be a valuable resource and support for you.
Sylvia Hurst, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Reading Education
University of Central Oklahoma