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Learn lessons from the rise—turn the tide for your students! 

Mississippi was once ranked last in the nation for reading achievement, but today has turned the tide. The state reached the national average for 4th grade reading on the 2019 National Assessment of Educational Progress and scored above the national average in 2022 in spite of the pandemic. The folks on the ground will tell you this was no "Mississippi Miracle" but due to a lot of hard work over many years and some strategic policies and actions that created a perfect storm. 

Two key players will be with us on June 8, 2023, to share the long view of literacy in Mississippi and how this work CAN be replicated to raise literacy achievement for all students. Featured speakers are Kymyona Burk, Mississippi’s former state literacy director and now senior policy fellow at ExcelinEd, and Kelly Butler, CEO of the Barksdale Reading Institute.  

What you will learn from this webinar: 

  • It is possible to move the needle for all students. 
  • There are “non-negotiables” that are necessary to make meaningful change. 
  • What professional learning needs to look like to transform instruction. 
  • How to get all invested parties moving in the same direction: state policy makers, teacher training, higher education, district and building leaders, classroom teachers, families, and communities. 
  • The ongoing nature of the work. 

Register today to join us!

For security purposes, we use a 2-step registration process. After you complete the form on this page, you will need to add your name and email to the Zoom webinar form to receive a final confirmation. 

* All live webinar attendees will receive a Certificate of Completion for 1.0 hours. 

Complete this form to register.

Meet your Webinar Facilitators

Burk Headshot_2020Dr. Kymyona Burk, Senior Policy Fellow for Early Literacy at the Foundation for Excellence in Education 

Dr. Kymyona Burk, Senior Policy Fellow for Early Literacy at the Foundation for Excellence in Education (ExcelinEd), supports a comprehensive approach to K-3 reading policy by assisting leaders in building or improving K-3 reading policies and implementation. Prior to this position, she served as the Executive Director for the Office of Teaching and Learning in the Jackon Public School District, Jackson, MS. 

20230314_KellyButler-9 (3)Kelly Butler, Chief Executive Officer at the Barksdale Reading Institute 

Kelly Butler is Chief Executive Officer at the Barksdale Reading Institute (BRI). She holds a bachelor’s degree in special education from the University of Alabama and a master’s degree in administration, planning and social policy from Harvard University. Prior to joining BRI, Kelly served as a teacher in the Greenwich, Conn. public schools, and has worked extensively with a variety of non-profit organizations in social service, health care and education in the areas of program development, support and evaluation. 

Additional Resources

95 Phonics Core Program®: Tier 1 Structured Literacy Solution for K-5 Rooted in the Science of Reading

Our explicit phonics program is strategically designed to effectively address skill gaps, improve instructional practices, and reduce intervention needs. This whole class resource is an essential part of our comprehensive multi-tiered product and professional learning ecosystem. Learn more and download grade-level resources by visiting our 95 Phonics Core Program Resource Center

Learn More about 95 Phonics


For more information about 95 Percent Group, please visit our website.