Texas communities have been coming together for many years to support schools and parents in their efforts to increase reading skills. Many cities that have created collaborative work focused on supporting children achieve academic success are part of a national network of cities working toward the same goals called the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading. In order to become part of the Campaign, stakeholders in each of these cities — including business, nonprofits, government and philanthropy — worked collaboratively to develop a plan focused on increasing reading achievement, proposing specific strategies and identifying local goals related to school readiness, summer learning loss, chronic absenteeism and parental engagement. At the national level, the Campaign provides technical assistance as these communities implement their plans. There are more than 300 communities participating in the GLR Network. Communities are located all across the country. If you’re looking for the lead contact in a Texas community, please contact us.

Here’s a list of Texas communities in the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading Network:


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The Start Smart Texas Initiative is being championed in Dallas through a collaborative that includes The Commit Partnership, United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, and the local PBS/NPR affiliate KERA.  All three organizations bring complimentary resources and expertise in addressing key issues related to academic success of students in our city including school readiness, parent engagement, and summer learning loss.  Dallas efforts in the Campaign For Grade-Level Reading began in 2016 after initial meetings with members of the collaborative and a shared vision that we could change outcomes for our youth if we aligned behind ensuring students were achieving reading proficiency by the third grade. The Commit! Partnership leads the campaign efforts by leveraging its partners which include public school districts, charter school networks, private schools, higher education institutions, foundations, businesses, nonprofits and faith-based and community organizations, including United Way.  The Partnership convenes, facilitates and provides resources to partners to achieve better student outcomes across 11 critical community achievement indicators. Dallas County has seen measurable progress in summer learning, school readiness, and overall grade-level reading for children from low-income families, as well as exemplary efforts in promoting civic engagement and inclusiveness. An interactive data dashboard can be found on the Commit! website:










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The Hub’s four-part early learning plan, “Every Child Ready to Succeed”, focuses on school readiness with Kids Club, Books for Babies, PBS multimedia app distribution program, and now Parents as Teachers (PAT) programs. The Campaign for Grade Level Reading’s priority on school readiness focuses on preparing more children from low income families so they are on track and ready for school. The Palacios Community Hub’s programs will help ensure there will be fewer children entering kindergarten with undetected, undiagnosed delays that can impede learning. We are especially excited about future outcomes for Palacios children of our new high intensity PAT program as it prepares children for school readiness and prevents delays in learning through its health screening process! For more information, contact Cassandra Austin (361) 972-9990,,,



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San Antonio:

United Way‘s ReadyKidSA Coalition, in partnership with the City of San Antonio, Department of Human Services (DHS) and Pre-K 4SA, KLRN, the P-16 Plus Council of Greater Bexar County, San Antonio Housing Authority, local school districts and numerous community organizations are merging resources to help San Antonio’s young children follow the path to reading success and school readiness. Through this collaboration, San Antonio has seen measurable progress in increasing Grade-Level Reading and school readiness. From this community collaborative, the Children’s Agenda was developed creating a Community Scorecard outlining three focus areas and the key indicators driving the goal that all children in San Antonio will be Happy, Healthy and Ready to enter kindergarten. Please visit for a list of resources and more details on this community initiative.  For questions, you may contact Kasi McCormick at 210-352-7147 or Katherine King, 210-352-7106.




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Start Smart Texas is a partnership between the Texas Education Agency, United Ways of Texas and Texas PBS created to support Texas communities that are part of the Campaign for Grade-level Reading, as well as other Texas cities, to achieve improved reading scores across our state. Start Smart Texas will provide cities the opportunity to learn from each other and together as we all strive to achieve improved reading scores across the state.