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"Whatever It Takes" to Read!

5 Pillars of  Literacy


5 Pillars of Literacy

VESD Reading Certification

We are pleased to introduce the plan below to continue to improve reading instruction and student outcomes in VESD.  We have developed an optional reading certification program based on the following:
  1. The skill and knowledge of our staff is most important.
  2. The district mission is for all students to develop foundational skills.
  3. 2023-24 Board approved LCAP goals and actions:  
    • Goal 1:  Foundation Skills for all Students, Action 1.4:  Small Group Instruction and Intervention
    • Goal 2:  Staff training to support Foundational Skills, Action 2.1:  Certificated Professional Development
    • Goal 4:  Foundational Skills for Subgroups not meeting Standards, Action 4.1:  Reading Residency Program
  4. Evidence-based structures for improving reading known as the “5 Pillars of Reading” are yielding results in VESD (, CAASPP ELA/Math scores, district benchmarks).


To receive the VESD reading certification, you will need to complete each of the following tiers.  
Tier 1:  To complete Tier 1, all of the training noted under the 5 Pillars of Reading must be completed.  
5 Pillars of Reading
  • Phonics:  Orton-Gillingham-Comprehensive 
  • Vocabulary:  Orton-Gillingham-Morphology
  • Comprehension:  Thinking Maps- Response to Text
  • Fluency:  Guided Reading
  • Phonemic Awareness:  Heggerty   
Tier 2 will include coaching and support that will be a 3-5 hour commitment.
Tier 3 will include a collaboration and modeling structure and will be a 3 day commitment. (TBD)
Tier 4 will include mentorship and modeling on-going.(TBD)