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Early Reading First

Project Period: September 1, 2015 to August 31, 2016


The purpose of the Early Reading First project is to provide Rocky Boy’s Head Start children with the pre-requisite skills needed to succeed in developing a healthy understanding of early literacy concepts. Through the Early Reading First project, we will provide learning materials for the classrooms in order to create a literacy-rich environment. Teachers and aides will be provided with research-based curricular materials (Houghton Mifflin ‘Where Bright Futures Begin’), ongoing research-based professional development (McREL, Scaffolding Early Literacy) and instructional support using literacy coaches and model teachers to ensure that the children of the RB Coalition are prepared to enter kindergarten with the cognitive, early language and literacy skills needed for success in school: oral language, phonological awareness, alphabet knowledge, and print awareness.


The RB Coalition will improve the school readiness of 218 low-income, ethnically and language-diverse children in 9 classrooms throughout rural communities of the Chippewa-Cree Tribe.  The Rocky Boy School District received a $1.8 million Early Reading First grant through the U.S. Department of Education for a three year period.

Head Start/Early Head Start Director;
Luanne Belcourt

HS Teacher:
Vicky Dritsoula

EHS Educator:
Natasha Pettit

EHS/Family Services Manager:
Josette Bill

HS Education Manager:
Debbie Wilkinson

HS Secretary/Receptionist:
June Standing Rock

HS Family Services Advocate:
Sunny Whalawitsa

EHS Family Services Advocates:
Nicolette Stump

HS Health Services Advocate:
Colleen Baker

HS Disabilities Educator:
Shannon LaSalle

HS Cooks:
Wesley St. Marks and Donald Sutherland

Food Service Baker:
Michale Eagleman

EHS Cook:
Lucy Stump

HS Bus Drivers:
William Corcoran, Carita Lodgepole, and Dalton Sun Child

HS Reading Coach:
Eugenia Begay

HS Health Manager:
Pauline Standing Rock

For more information please call the Rocky Boy Head Start/Early Head Start Program at (406)-395-4640