News Releases 2018

MDE Announces 3rd Annual Literacy Coaching Symposium in Biloxi

by Gary Ragsdale | Apr 25, 2018

Carey M. Wright, Ed.D., State Superintendent of Education

Office of Communications & Government Relations

Patrice Guilfoyle, APR, Director of Communications *601-359-3706

Jean Cook, APR, Communications Specialist * 601-359-3519



For Immediate Release: April 25, 2018

MDE Announces 3rd Annual Literacy Coaching Symposium in Biloxi

JACKSON, Miss. –
The Mississippi Department of Education’s Office of Elementary Education and Reading will host its third annual Literacy Coaching Symposium on June 5, 2018, in association with the 2018 Making Connections Conference at the Gulf Coast Coliseum and Convention Center in Biloxi.  The symposium is a one-day pre-conference institute designed to provide a focused professional learning opportunity for K-12 literacy coaches, reading specialists, instructional coordinators, lead teachers, and administrators who work directly with teachers to support literacy instruction. 

This event is designed to promote collaboration among instructional leaders and provide professional learning opportunities and resources to strengthen coaching capacity. 

Nationally-renowned presenters will deliver sessions, in addition to sessions offered by MDE literacy experts. Speakers include:

  • Dr. Toy L. Watts, Superintendent of Laurel School District with over 20 years in education and experience serving as a teacher, counselor, coach, principal, and assistant superintendent.
  • Dr. Liz Brooke, Chief Education Officer, Lexia and Rosetta Stone, leads the Education and Research departments, setting the educational vision, developing the pedagogical approach, and establishing the research and efficacy strategy for literacy and language products.  
  • Dr. Barbara Foorman, internationally known expert in reading with over 150 publications, Director Emeritus of the Florida Center for Reading Research, and Director of the Regional Educational Laboratory Southeast at Florida State University;
  • Michael Cormack, Chief Executive Officer of the Barksdale Reading Institute and former principal of Quitman County Elementary School.

    Interactive presentations will explore:

    Interactive presentations will explore:

    • Maximizing the Impact of Reading Assessment and Instruction: The Important Role of Oral Language
    • The Literacy Leader: How Principals Support a Culture of Reading
    • Developing Effective Writers
    • Cognitive Coaching
    • Using Effective Writing Strategies to Enhance All Students’ Learning
    • Understanding the Nature of Poverty: Success Factors that Enrich the Minds of All Learners
    • Creating Robust Vocabulary for English Learners
    • Effective Reading Interventions in Schools: Alignment of Tier 1 and Tier 2 Interventions
    • Setting the Foundation for School Success
    • Identifying Evidence-Based Resources to Guide the Development of School Improvement Plans

    The symposium will conclude with a panel discussion highlighting multiple perspectives on Student-Centered Coaching: Reaching All Learners.

    To register for the third annual Literacy Coaching Symposium pre-conference institute and the 2018 Making Connections Conference, visit  A direct link to the Literacy Coaching Symposium is also available:

    2018 Literacy Coaching Symposium Flyer

    View highlights from the 2017 Literacy Coaching Symposium



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