Pearson Education, Learning Network, and NCLD partner to launch 'Get Ready to Read!'

New Screening Tool Helps Parents and Teachers Target Literacy Skills

NEW YORK, NY [October, 30, 2001]-- Pearson Education, the world's largest education business, and its sister company Learning Network[http://learningnetwork.com] have partnered with the National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD) to launch "Get Ready to Read!", an easy-to-use, 20 question screening tool for parents and child care providers to identify young children's readiness to read.

Parents of young children as well as early childhood professionals can quickly and easily access and administer the new research-based screening tool either online at [http://learningnetwork.com/read] or through a printed version published by Pearson Education's Early Learning Group available for sale at [http://learningnetworkstore.com] or at 1-877-260-2534.

"Get Ready to Read! provides parents and those caring for young children with a better understanding of the critical skills children need to learn to read," said Rob Lippincott, senior vice president for K12 and general manager, Learning Network, part of Pearson, plc. "Using this screening tool to find any signs of early difficulties or apparent skill gaps will allow parents, caregivers, and educators the best chance to develop a successful literacy strategy for every child."

The need for Early Literacy Screening

According to the U.S. government, four in ten American children have significant literacy delays. Among children with learning disabilities, 80 percent have problems with reading. More than 20 years of research has resulted in identifying successful reading strategies. Based upon this research, Get Ready to Read! offers a screening tool and activities designed to strengthen emergent literacy skills in the year before kindergarten when intervention is most effective.

The Get Ready to Read! screening tool was developed by Grover (Russ)Whitehurst, Ph.D., former professor of psychology and pediatrics and chairman, Department of Psychology, State University at Stony Brook, and current Assistant Secretary of Education for Education Research and Improvement, U.S. Department of Education, and Christopher Lonigan, Ph.D., associate professor, Department of Psychology, Florida State University at Tallahassee.

"For nearly 25 years NCLD has been committed to developing research-based solutions for children who struggle to learn," said James H. Wendorf, executive director of NCLD. "By partnering with Pearson, NCLD will be able to disseminate the Get Ready to Read! program and screening tool to a broad
audience of parents,pediatricians, teachers, and policymakers. Our goal is to help the next generation of readers by providing strategies and tools that unlock their power to learn."

"Part of Pearson's mission is to ensure that children age 0 to 5, their teachers, and their parents have access to research-based early learning programs that deliver prerequisite language and early literacy skills," said Kathy Costello, president of the Early Learning Group, Pearson Education. "We are committed to offering quality educational resources, tools, and content to both parents and child care providers. This is the first of many new Early Literacy initiatives for Pearson."

Notes

About Pearson Education:

With offices in 30 countries, Pearson Education is the world's largest education business. Its leading brands include Addison Wesley, Allyn & Bacon, Benjamin Cummings, Longman, Prentice Hall, Pearson Learning, Scott Foresman, and NCS Pearson. Pearson Education is the global leader in online learning through its CourseCompass program (www.coursecompass.com), 1,800 textbook companion Web sites, NCS Learn, and the InformIT portal for technology professionals. Pearson is the global education business of
Pearson plc, the international media group. For more information, visit www.pearsoned.com.

About Learning Network
Learning Network, the Internet's largest website for parents, students and teachers, offers an unmatched array of online educational tools, content, and reference resources. Learning Network is part of Pearson, plc [NYSE: PSO] the London-based international media company, which also owns leading educational and media companies including Prentice-Hall, Addison Wesley Longman, Penguin Books, and the Financial Times. For more information, call 1-888-816-1999, or visit http://learningnetwork.com on the Internet.

About the National Center for Learning Disabilities:

The mission of NCLD is to increase opportunities for all individuals with learning disabilities to achieve their potential. NCLD promotes public awareness and understanding of learning disabilities and provides national leadership on policy-making and best practices so that those with learning disabilities may participate fully in society.

Contact

David Conti
Learning Network
david.conti@learningnetwork.com