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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Selects EarlyBird as an Approved Literacy Screening Assessment

·2-min read

BOSTON, September 22, 2021--(BUSINESS WIRE)--After careful review, the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) has chosen EarlyBird as an approved early literacy screening assessment. Developed and scientifically validated at Boston Children’s Hospital in partnership with faculty at the Florida Center for Reading Research, EarlyBird is a game-based screener that brings together all the relevant predictors of reading in one easy-to-administer assessment.

EarlyBird, which is used by schools and districts across Massachusetts and the U.S., met all of the criteria established by the Massachusetts DESE. Approved early literacy screening assessments are required to be valid and reliable, scientifically based, brief, able to be administered three times per year, and code- and meaning-based and/or a Rapid Automatized Naming (RAN) assessment.

"Research shows that the best time to identify reading difficulties is early. That’s why we developed EarlyBird," said Carla Small, co-founder and CEO of the Massachusetts-based EarlyBird Education. "EarlyBird is the product of breakthrough science, and it was born right here in Massachusetts. What makes EarlyBird unique is that it helps educators identify and support children at risk for reading difficulties, including dyslexia, in the window when intervention is most effective — even before they formally learn to read. We’re excited to partner with Massachusetts districts and schools to help them address reading difficulties when they can be most successfully overcome."

The cloud-based EarlyBird platform includes a game-based app that provides comprehensive, validated student testing, and a dashboard that points teachers to customized action plans and evidence-based resources for individuals or groups of students. The early literacy screener can be administered at the beginning, middle, and end of the school year — or any time.

Students self-administer the EarlyBird screener using a tablet and headset. Testing can be conducted individually or in small groups with oversight from an adult. The screener is appropriate for pre-readers and can be used by children as young as four years old. With just minutes of tablet game play, EarlyBird can predict the potential for dyslexia or other reading difficulties. It creates a customized literacy profile for each student, and leads teachers to vetted resources and recommendations so they can help get students on track.

About EarlyBird

EarlyBird transforms students’ lives through the early detection of reading difficulties, including dyslexia. For information, visit

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Leslie Eicher

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