The literacy gap between students from wealthy families and those from poor families is widening. Literacy levels are tied to long-term adult achievement and affect high-school graduation rates, access to quality jobs and incarceration rates, among other things.

The team at Literator want to change that. Here’s how:

When Michelle Ching taught second grade in Oakland, California, she struggled to meet the diverse and complex reading needs of her students. She experienced resourcing gaps, particularly around literacy.

Seeing an opportunity to tackle one of the biggest problems in America’s education system, she created Literator.

Literator helps teachers, particularly those working in underserved communities that struggle with literacy issues, teach students how to read. It does so by giving teachers guided instruction and insights for intervention in real time.

Teachers use the mobile app to enter a student’s name and literacy level. Literator creates a custom curriculum and prompts for that student, allowing a single teacher to scale literacy instruction across the varied needs of a single class. It also allows teachers to track a student’s progress, which is then synthesized into a tidy data report.

Michelle and the team at Literator believe that literacy is a fundamental marker for a student’s success both in and out of school, and that their tool is a game changer.

The Innovation Challenge is sponsored by Samsung NEXT and produced in partnership with NationSwell. In America, not everyone has the same access to education, workforce development, and economic empowerment. We’re looking for exceptional entrepreneurs who are using technology to close this opportunity gap. The winner will receive $25,000 to further their work, $13,000 in Samsung technology and a one-year membership to the NationSwell Council.

To meet our five finalists, visit www.nationswell.com/samsungnext


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