Governor Bush Kicks off 2005 Just Read, Florida! Leadership Conference
~~ ~More than 3,000 Florida principals attend third annual Leadership Conference~ ~~
Governor Jeb Bush today welcomed thousands of elementary, middle and high school principals to the third annual Just Read, Florida! Leadership Conference in Orlando. Sponsored in part by the Florida Lottery, the three-day conference brings together more than 3000 Florida educators, including elementary, middle and high school principals, school superintendents and reading supervisors from all Florida districts. Just Read, Florida! is the Governor's statewide reading initiative designed to achieve the goal of every child reading at or above grade level by the year 2012.
"Principals play a vital role in our schools," Governor Bush said. "Florida is committed to ensuring principals have the latest research on reading at their fingertips. Not only are we training principals this summer, but also, through our Just Read, Florida! Reading and Coaching Academies, we are training teachers and coaches. I'm very excited about the results these efforts are producing."
The conference features sessions conducted by some of the nation's top reading experts. Issues include the five essential components of reading (phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary and comprehension), the role of the school's reading coach, parent partnerships, and success stories from a panel of model school principals.
In September 2001, Governor Bush signed an executive order creating the Just Read, Florida! initiative. The initiative is designed to guide changes at every level of education that have an impact on reading outcomes in Florida schools. It also provides for parent, business and community involvement. The ultimate goal of the reading initiative is that every child read at or above grade level by 2012.
"In order to Leave No Child Behind, we must ensure the leaders of our schools are grounded in the latest reading research, and they have the tools they need to become instructional leaders. I appreciate the commitment each of these principals has made to be here, and to help us make sure all children are reading on grade level," Florida Commissioner of Education John Winn said.
To learn more about Governor Bush's statewide reading initiative, Just Read, Florida!, please visit www.justreadflorida.com .