Background of PALS
Early Intervention Reading Initiative
Virginia’s Early Intervention Reading Initiative (EIRI) was initially established by the 1997 Virginia Acts of Assembly to help participating school districts identify kindergarten and first grade children in need of additional instruction and provide early intervention services to those students with diagnosed needs in reading. Due to its overwhelming success, the Governor and General Assembly provided funding to expand the Initiative in March 2000 to include students in kindergarten through grade three.
The purposes of the EIRI are to (a) provide teachers with a screening tool to help them identify students who would benefit from additional instruction in reading, and (b) offer incentive funds for school divisions to provide these students with additional instruction.
The Phonological Awareness Literacy Screening (PALS) is the state-provided screening tool for Virginia’s Early Intervention Reading Initiative, and is used by 100% of school districts in Virginia on a voluntary basis. PALS consists of two screening instruments, PALS-K (for students in kindergarten) and PALS 1-3 (for students in grades one through three), which measure young children’s knowledge of important literacy fundamentals, including phonological awareness, alphabet knowledge, knowledge of letter sounds, spelling, concept of word, word recognition in isolation, and oral passage reading. The major purpose of PALS is to identify those students who are below grade-level expectations in these areas and may be in need of additional reading instruction funded through the EIRI. PALS can also be used as a diagnostic tool to provide teachers with explicit information about what their students know of these literacy fundamentals to help guide their teaching.
Development of the Phonological Awareness Literacy Screening has been supported by a grant from the Virginia Department of Education through Virginia's Early Intervention Reading Initiative. Without the support provided by this grant, the research and development required for this assessment
Virginia Department of Education
Office of Elementary Instructional Services
24th Floor Monroe Building
P.O. Box 2120
Phone:(804) 786-1997 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (804) 786-1997 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
FAX: (804) 786-1703
K-8 Reading Program
Floyd County Public Schools established a literacy framework for all kindergarten through third grades students during the 2001-2002 school year which emphasizes pre-assessment, research based literacy practices, high expectations and prevention/intervention rather than remediation. There are four components to the framework which inlcude: reading, writing, spelling, and assessment. During the 2005-2006 school year, the K-3 reading framework was revised and was extended into grades 4-5. At that time a more detailed comprehension component was added. Another revision was made during the 2009-2010 school year. At that time the reading component was extended once again into grades 6-8, the K-3 writing component was revised to include the Six Traits of Writing, and the 4-8 Writing Component, including the Six Traits of Writing, was written and initiated.