Bluefield State College and Concord University Faculty Assist RESA I in Presenting Adolescent Literacy Workshop

For Immediate Release: 
Sep 04 2008

For Additional Information, Contact Jim Nelson/Media Relations
(304) 327-4103,, or

Anita Moody, (304) 384-5288,

Bluefield State College and Concord University Faculty Assist RESA I in Presenting Adolescent Literacy Workshop

Bluefield, W.Va. - Bluefield State College faculty members Dr. Tom Blevins, Dr. Tammy Ferguson, and Dr. Pat Hilton joined Concord University faculty Dr. Rick Druggush, Dr. Kathy Hawks, and Dr. William Williams to assist RESA I (Regional Educational Service Area) staff in presenting a summer institute focusing upon adolescent literacy for middle school teachers and administrators. The institute was held at Concord University.

During the workshop, West Virginia Department of Education personnel delivered instruction in a model reading intervention program, “AIM--Adolescent Instruction Model for Literacy.” Additionally, CU faculty presented subject-specific programs to middle school teachers, focusing upon the implementation of an adolescent literacy program in the middle grades. Dr. Druggish modeled a before, during and after instructional framework for content literacy using the book, Fly Away Home by Eve Bunting. Dr. Hawks presented a variety of graphic organizers which focused on increasing student literacy for secondary teachers. Dr. Williams provided an introduction to multi-genre writing for middle school students. In each session, participants were engaged in a variety of hands-on activities.

Dr. Druggish noted: “Working with middle school teachers and administrators from southern West Virginia was a tremendous experience. We became a community of learners as we shared ideas and brainstormed methods for implementing the Adolescent Instruction Model. Our audience was very receptive and we look forward to working with them throughout the upcoming school year.”

Next, BSC faculty continued the subject-specific adolescent literacy program presentations. Dr. Blevins provided an overview of the “Reading Next” publication produced by the Carnegie Commission. Dr. Ferguson discussed implementing code-switching to increase adolescent literacy, and Dr. Hilton gave middle school teachers reading strategies for assisting readers in the development of reading skill sets.

Approximately 50 middle school teachers from Mercer, McDowell, Wyoming, and Summers Counties participated in the workshop. These trained teachers will now develop an adolescent literacy program within their schools. As they establish the programs, they will continue to be supported by BSC and CU faculty and RESA I staff.

The workshop was funded by a grant from the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, written by RESA I Executive Director, Keith Butcher. The summer institute was coordinated by Linda Ballard-Price, RESA I Professional Development Director.