NYC Selects the EL Education K-5 Language Arts Curriculum As One of Three Options Based on the Science of Reading

New York City Department of Education is Prioritizing Research-Backed Curriculum and Flexibility of Instruction

NEW YORK, May 15, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE) announced that it has selected the top-rated EL Education (formerly Expeditionary Learning) K-5 Language Arts curriculum as one of three options for literacy curriculum from which the district’s elementary schools will be able to choose, starting in the 2023-2024 school year. By selecting EL Education’s high-quality, research-based instructional materials, the New York City Department of Education has paved the way for growth in student achievement and teacher practice.

The EL Education curriculum is part of what NYCDOE Chancellor David C. Banks calls “the beginning of a massive turnaround” launched through the newly unveiled New York City Reads initiative. New York City Mayor Eric Adams and Chancellor Banks launched the initiative to declare literacy and reading instruction a top priority in New York City’s public schools.

"Each day we see educators exceeding their highest aspirations and catalyzing remarkable student growth when they have access to a research-based, culturally affirming language arts curriculum. We are honored to continue working with New York City educators to implement our curriculum, paired with aligned professional learning, and to celebrate what students and teachers can do with access to powerful instructional tools and professional learning services,” said Scott Hartl, President and CEO of EL Education.

The EL Education K-5 Language Arts curriculum is a comprehensive, standards-based core literacy program that engages teachers and students through complex, culturally affirming, real-world content and builds equitable learning opportunities for all students. The curriculum is a comprehensive approach to literacy instruction that supports students in knowledge-building and joyful participation in the world of text. Two parts of the curriculum are infused with the science of reading-based instructional practices: the Reading Foundations Skills Block and the Content-Based Literacy Modules.

The EL Education K-5 Language Arts curriculum is developed by teachers for teachers and is iterative based on feedback from teachers, students, their families, and school leaders. The curriculum honors students' unique identities and opens their minds to new ideas. The EL Education curriculum has received top marks from independent reviewers, including EdReports.orgRigorous studies by Mathematica Policy Research and other leading research organizations demonstrate that EL Education teachers significantly improve their craft and students achieve more, regardless of their background, when districts pair the curriculum with aligned professional learning.

New York City’s selection reflects a growing movement across the country toward curricula rooted in the science of reading. Several states have already mandated phonics-based curricula. The EL Education curriculum includes explicit phonics instruction and other research-proven practices that ensure all students have opportunities to achieve and exceed grade-level literacy.

EL Education has supported schools in New York City in implementing its language arts curriculum for nearly a decade. Twenty-two schools in the city currently partner with EL Education, 10 of which are in the Bronx 11 school district. By the 2024-2025 school year, 32 local school districts will have had the opportunity to adopt EL Education from a pool of three curricula. Fifteen school districts have already made their selections for the upcoming school year. Educators selecting the EL Education curriculum will receive comprehensive support and training from a curriculum-aligned professional development partner organization.

Large districts across the country, such as Detroit, Oakland, and Hamilton County, Tenn., are seeing student growth after implementing the EL Education curriculum and aligned professional learning. For example, Detroit Public Schools Community District students achieved the greatest single-year improvement in the history of the M-STEP state ELA exam in 2019, after two years of implementing the EL Education K-8 Language Arts curriculum.

EL Education has a longstanding history of serving students and educators in New York City and New York State. EL Education authored the acclaimed EngageNY 3-8 Language Arts Curriculums, the first open educational resource aligned to the high-quality standards used in many schools and states across the country. EL Education has delivered multiple improved iterations based on community feedback since answering the call in 2012. EL Education has also provided professional learning tailored to the curriculum to New York City districts and educators, including offering support for strategic planning, differentiation, progress monitoring, and continuous improvement. EL Education is an approved professional learning provider in New York City.


EL Education is a national nonprofit partnering with K-12 educators to transform public schools and districts into hubs of opportunity for all students to achieve excellent equitable outcomes. EL Education is guided by a vision of education equity embracing the genius in every child and by a reimagined definition of student achievement. EL Education offers research-proven resources and practices, including the acclaimed EL Education K-8 Language Arts curriculum, Core Practices, and aligned professional learning. EL Education was founded in 1991 and currently serves 440,000 students in diverse communities across the country. Learn more at


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