Elementary Core Reading Program Selection

Elementary Core Reading Program Selection


Elementary Core Reading Program Selection Process

After a thorough review process, DCSD chose three core reading programs* from the approved list of core resources from the Colorado Department of Education to pilot.  In the spring of 2021, the DCSD Board of Education approved the adoption of three core reading programs for elementary schools (04/20/21 | 05/11/21). 

These programs are Benchmark Advance, Benchmark Workshop, and Wonders.  Twelve schools are piloting these programs for the fall semester 2021.  In January 2022, a decision will be made about which program(s) will be purchased with district funds for the 2022-23 school year and beyond. The district is funding the purchase of a core reading program in order to best meet students’ instructional needs, to align with the READ Act requirements, and to support the equitable distribution of resources.

The selection and implementation of a core reading program(s) supports DCSD Strategic Theme #4: Aligned curriculum with flexible instructional delivery. Final selection of program(s) will be a collaborative decision by a variety of stakeholders and will include input from the community.

*Schools already using EL Education may have the option of continuing to use this resource.


  • August: Schools begin piloting programs (training and support for staff will be ongoing)
  • September: Community Presentations; collect feedback from teachers and leaders
  • October: Materials on display for community at the Cantril Building and Highlands Ranch Library; collect feedback from teachers and leaders
  • November: Collect feedback from teachers and leaders
  • December: Final data collection
  • January: Review data analysis and final selection of program(s)


Community Engagement Opportunities

Materials display:
Display of program materials for community viewing available September 28 through October 31, 2021 at 312 Cantril Street (8am-3pm) and at the Highlands Ranch Public Library, 9292 S Ridgeline Blvd, Highlands Ranch.

Community Presentations:
Presentations by the program vendors will be provided in person and live streamed. The in-person presentations will be in the Rocky Heights Middle School Library from 6-7:30pm. See additional details below:

DCSD, Benchmark Presentation, Livestream
This will include Benchmark Advance and Benchmark Workshop
September 29th, 6pm to 7:30pm - Completed

DCSD, Wonders Presentation, Livestream
September 30th, 6pm to 7:30pm - Completed

In addition to these district opportunities, community members may also contact their elementaries for information about ways they can get involved.

 If you would like to send any input to the district selection team, we encourage you to fill out the form below


Program Comparison Chart

               Wonders  Benchmark Workshop  Benchmark Advance
Program Website Wonders Website Benchmark Website Benchmark Website
EdReports Wonders EdReport No EdReport for Benchmark Workshop, only Benchmark Advance. Benchmark Advance EdReport
CDE Rating Comments Wonders CDE Review
Benchmark Workshop CDE Review
Benchmark Advance CDE Review
Literacy Block Components Workshop Model: foundational skills/word work, interactive read aloud, independendent choice, small group guided reading, shared and close reading, writing workshop Workshop Model: Reader’s Workshop, Writer’s Workshop, Phonics & Word Study Workshop. Whole group instruction, small group instruction, all texts are connected to the unit topic. Every topic is a unit and there are 10 three week units.
Possible need for supplementation CDE notes supplementation may be needed for text reading and fluency for gr. K-2. This need to supplement should be based on student need according to data. Due to gaps in text reading and fluency in grade 1, additional fluency instruction may be needed based on student performance.
CDE notes supplementation may be needed for text reading and fluency for gr. K-2. This need to supplement should be based on student need according to data.
Phonics Can be supplemented with other phonics programs (e.g. Fundations) based on student need but is not required. Included in the Benchmark program. Included in the Benchmark program.
Other Wonderworks is a Tier 3, CDE-approved intervention for all components and complements this program. Advocacy group perceptions; many changes from previous program.
Benchmark Intervention is a Tier 3 program awaiting CDE approval.
Benchmark Intervention is a Tier 3 program awaiting CDE approval.

Additional Information

If you would like additional information about any of the programs or would like a demo login, feel free to contact the following district coordinators:

For Benchmark Advance or Benchmark Workshop:
Tiffany Regan
[email protected]

For Wonders:
Erin McConnell
[email protected]

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In compliance with Titles VI & VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, and Colorado law, the Douglas County School District RE-1 does not unlawfully discriminate against otherwise qualified students, employees, applicants for employment, or members of the public on the basis of disability, race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, religion, ancestry, or need for special education services. Discrimination against employees and applicants for employment based on age, genetic information, and conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth is also prohibited in accordance with state and/or federal law. Complaint procedures have been established for students, parents, employees, and members of the public. The School District's Compliance Officer and Title IX Coordinator to address complaints alleging sexual harassment under Title IX is Aaron Henderson, 620 Wilcox Street, Castle Rock, Colorado, [email protected], 303-387-0127.

Outside Agencies

Complaints regarding violations of Title VI, (race, national origin), Title IX (sex, gender), Section 504/ADA (handicap or disability), may be filed directly with the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, 1244 North Speer Blvd., Suite 310, Denver, CO 80204. Complaints regarding violations of Title VII (employment) and the ADEA (prohibiting age discrimination in employment) may be filed directly with the Federal Office of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 303 E. 17th Ave., Suite 510, Denver, CO 80202, or the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, 1560 Broadway, Suite 1050, Denver, CO 80202.


Special Education records which have been collected by Douglas County School District related to the identification, evaluation, educational placement, or the provision of special education in the district, must be maintained under state and federal laws for the period of five (5) years after special education services have ended for the student. Special education services end when the student is no longer eligible for services, graduates, or completes his/her educational program at age 21, or moves from the district. This notification is to inform parents/guardians and former students of Douglas County School District's intent to destroy the special education records of students who exited special education services as of June 30, 2016. These records will be destroyed in accordance with state law unless the parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student notifies the school district otherwise. After five years, the records are no longer useful to the district, but may be useful to the parent/guardian or former student in applying for social security benefits, rehabilitation services, college entrance, etc. The parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student may request a copy of the records by requesting the records at this link ( Douglas County School District Transcripts and Records Requests ).