ServeMinnesota

At a Glance

National Office: 
120 South 6th Street, Suite 2260
Minneapolis, MN 55402
Phone: 612-333-7740

Audrey Suker
People Served: 
35,000
Tax ID: 
412010058

Focus area(s):

Early Education
Reading/Math

Description

In 2003, ServeMinnesota launched Minnesota Reading Corps as a break-through solution that is changing outcomes for thousands of struggling readers. Well-trained tutors pinpoint literacy gaps and provide the instructional support students need to succeed.

Impact and Outcomes

Reading Corps students are outperforming their peers and exceeding literacy performance benchmarks for kindergarten readiness.
Reading Corps participants are three times less likely to be referred to special education than students who did not receive Reading Corps tutoring.
Reading Corps is helping close the achievement gap. Students of color, students eligible for free and reduced-price lunch, and English Language Learners are achieving outcomes equal to or better than their peers. In fact, those with higher risk factors actually made stronger gains.

Mission & Goals

ServeMinnesota is a catalyst to address critical needs in Minnesota by working with AmeriCorps and community partners. We share our proven practices nationally.

We get measurable results through: 

·         Innovation:  researching and applying the best data-driven methods to create powerful local solutions

·         Investment:  raising and allocating funds for AmeriCorps program development, and people serving in those programs, to maximize return 

·         Alignment:  aligning with local community and government priorities and setting consistent program standards to ensure measurable results

The power of AmeriCorps is combined with evidence-based practices to provide cost-effective solutions, deliver results, and bring proven models to scale. AmeriCorps members are highly motivated individuals of all ages that dedicate a year of service to give back to their community.  Currently more than 1,200 AmeriCorps members serve in Minnesota Reading Corps serving 30,000 children age 3 to grade 3. 

Program

Since 2003, Minnesota Reading Corps has helped nearly 200,000 struggling readers, age 3 to grade 3, progress toward reading proficiency by the end of third grade. By devoting AmeriCorps resources to help transfer literacy science into hands-on support, Reading Corps consistently delivers what struggling readers need – individualized, data-driven instruction, one-on-one attention, instruction delivered with fidelity, and with the frequency and duration needed for student achievement.

Effective use of data is at the core of the Reading Corps’ strategy. The model introduces validated assessments and interventions that are grounded in extensive scientific research. AmeriCorps tutors are rigorously trained to assess and monitor student progress and support them with expert literacy coaches. By analyzing student data, tutors and school staff can appropriately identity and address literacy gaps. The model provides schools with a total solution and is being taken to scale across Minnesota and has been adopted in 12 states and Washington, D.C. It is a permanent part of Minnesota’s literacy strategy and has been validated by the U.S. Department of Education. It was also named a “Bright Spot” by the Annie E. Casey Foundation Campaign for Grade-Level Reading. 

Impact

Minnesota Reading Corps is a disruptive innovation that has proven to be effective, affordable and scalable.  For less than $800 per student, the turnkey program and associated people power can be integrated into a school and, within that first year, help targeted students advance more than one grade level in reading. 

Because of its remarkable success, Reading Corps has grown from serving just 250 students in 2003 to more than 35,000 annually – all while improving its effectiveness. The program serves students in urban, suburban and rural settings.

Internal evaluations, conducted annually since 2003, and independent evaluations commissioned every three years have confirmed Reading Corps’ effectiveness. Studies show that Reading Corps is a proven model that uses data to accelerate improvements in both students and systems.

o    A rigorous study by the University of Chicago’s NORC confirms that combining the people power of AmeriCorps with literacy science significantly improves third grade reading proficiency.

o    The “gold standard” of evaluation, the randomized controlled trial (RCT) included 1,530 Kindergarten through third grade students who were assigned to either a treatment or control group.

o    A quasi-experimental design (QED) evaluation included 1,534 PreK students ages 3-5 who attended a Reading Corps PreK site or comparison site.

o    Significant, meaningful effects were found across age levels, with exceptionally positive outcomes for early grades, all of which are uncommon in educational research.

o    NORC found Reading Corps to be effective for all students. In fact, when differences were found, children with higher risk factors (e.g., dual language learners, students eligible for free and reduced-price lunch) made greater gains than their peers.

o    4- and 5-year-olds at Reading Corps sites exceeded growth targets on all five indicators, while students without the program only met one goal. The effect size for all measures was double, and in some cases quadruple, what the U.S. Department of Education considers to be meaningful impact.

o    Reading Corps students are three times less likely to be referred to special education.

Growth Plan

Economic Model.

ServeMinnesota, Minnesota’s state service commission, is currently seeking an investment of $15 million in growth capital over five years to help fully leverage the following strategic assets:

  • State Government: More states are committed to improving reading proficiency by third grade, and envision Reading Corps as the vehicle to deliver outcomes.
  • Demand: Growing demand among State Service Commissions interested in leading the Reading Corps replication to achieve similar results in their states.
  • Funding: Federal dollars allocated through these Commissions provide a flexible workforce of national service participants to solve education-related challenges in communities, and can be deployed to schools nationwide.
  • Affiliates: Community-based organizations with deep connections to local schools and families, experience in implementing tutoring programs and in managing a flexible workforce of national service participants who see Reading Corps as a proven solution to address significant local need.

With the resources to build on these strategic assets, ServeMinnesota can create the national and local capacity to support broad replication.  This ensures sustainability as states  (a) reach the tipping point to capture economies of scale that lower unit costs; (b) develop the track record needed to convince state policymakers to prioritize significant funding for statewide scale-up; and (c) strengthen local affiliates’ ability to advocate, fundraise and leverage strategic partnerships in support of expanding Reading Corps in their state.

Every $1 of growth capital invested will be leveraged by $3 in operating funds raised locally to improve student reading skills. This $15 million investment is expected to yield operational investments of more than $51 million (64,000 youth served each year at a cost of $800 per year) in federal, state and private funding.

Growth Plan.

More than 25 states have expressed interest in replicating Reading Corps and the model is currently operational in Colorado, Washington, D.C., Michigan, and Iowa. As illustrated in the attached chart, over the next five years, ServeMinnesota will double the number of children served each year. At the end of five years, each state will have up to 85 sites as well as the ability to continue funding Reading Corps through public-private partnerships.

Given the current growth and impact projections, an investment of $15 million in 2013 could generate significant returns by 2018, as follows:

  • At least 44,800 children will be on target to attain third grade reading proficiency who would not otherwise have achieved this outcome.
  • About 2,300 children annually will remain in general education classes rather than being assigned to special education.
  • As a consequence, approximately $18 million in special education costs will be saved by school districts that implement Reading Corps.

Location of Sites

National Office: 
120 South 6th Street, Suite 2260
Minneapolis, MN 55402
Phone: 612-333-7740
List of locations

To make a contribution to a program site:

  1. Click on the "Make a Contribution Now" button and include the name, city and state of the program you would like to support, in the "notes" text box on the organization's donation form, if available.
  2. If a "notes" or "designation" box is not available, write the city and state on your check in the "notes" section or call the national office to designate your contribution to a local program site.

Locations in the following states:

No results found.

Financials

Most Recent Budget

Year Ended:

2016

REVENUE

Corporate Grants: 
$800,000
Foundation Grants: 
$1,166,000
Government Funding: 
$30,984,044
Contributions from Individuals: 
$35,000
Special Events: 
$0
Program Services Fees: 
$401,156
Membership Dues: 
$0
Other Earned Income: 
$0
Other Revenue: 
$4,440
Other Revenue (Description): 
Interest: $4,440.00
Total Revenue: 
$33,390,640

EXPENSES

Salaries, Related Salaries & Professional Fees: 
$4,520,047
Occupancy: 
$262,251
Travel & Entertainment: 
$177,410
Office Supplies, Printing, Postage: 
$236,683
Telephone & Communications: 
$13,224
Payments to Affiliates: 
$19,099,884
Other Expenses: 
$32,353,356
Other Expenses (Description): 

 

Payments to subgrantees: $32,353,356.00
Other Expenses (Description): 

Other Expenses (Description): 

Total Expenses: 
$56,662,855

NET GAIN/LOSS

Net Gain/Loss: 
$-23,272,215

Prior Year Actuals

Year Ended:

2015

REVENUE

Corporate Grants: 
$1,511,000
Foundation Grants: 
$1,151,470
Government Funding: 
$27,980,680
Contributions from Individuals: 
$34,699
Program Services Fees: 
$513,264
Membership Dues: 
$0
Other Earned Income: 
$0
Other Revenue: 
$3,954
Other Revenue (Description): 
Interest: $3,954.00
Special Events: 
$0
Total Revenue: 
$31,195,067

EXPENSES

Salaries, Related Salaries & Professional Fees: 
$2,356,374
Occupancy: 
$208,449
Travel & Entertainment: 
$104,832
Office Supplies, Printing, Postage: 
$262,308
Telephone & Communication: 
$22,909
Payments to Affiliates: 
$22,317,302
Other Expenses: 
$26,839,274
Other Expenses (Description): 

Payments to subgrantees:

$26,839,274.00

Total Expenses: 
$52,111,448

NET GAIN/LOSS

Net Gain / Loss: 
$-20,916,381

Major Funders

3M

F.R. Bigelow Foundation

Good Family Donor Advised Fund

Greater Twin Cities United Way

Hardenbergh Foundation

Morgan Family Foundation

Northfield Area United Way

Northside Achievement Zone (subaward)

Sheltering Arms Foundation

Social Innovation Fund

St. Paul Children’s Collaborative

Target Corporation

United Way of Bemidji Area

United Way of Central Minnesota

W. K. Kellogg Foundation