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Overview of the “Unleash What Could Be” Initiative

Red Wing and Northfield joined together to successfully apply for the StriveTogether Accelerator Fund. Known as the Minnesota Twins, the Red Wing/Northfield partnership was one of only 5 efforts nationwide accepted into he Accelerator Fund, joining: Washington, DC; Seattle, WA; Spartanburg County, SC; and Milwaukee, WI. The Goal is to help provide additional resources and support to accelerate progress in seeing more children achieve benchmarks on each community’s cradle-to-career continuum.



Why 3rd Grade Reading?

One of the shared benchmarks between Red Wing and Northfield is the goal that every child will read at grade level by the end of 3rd grade. While great effort is underway in this area in both communities, we still have work to do to reach this target. Last year, 63% of Red Wing 3rd graders and 57% of Northfield 3rd graders reached proficiency in reading on the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment. Our goal is to grow these numbers by at least 3% per year over the coming years and to narrow the achievement gap seen by low-income and minority youth.

If each classroom in Northfield and Red Wing is able to move more kids to proficiency who are in the “moderate risk” or “high risk” cohorts after the fall assessments, we should collectively reach the goal!

Strong School + Supportive Community = Success

Teachers and schools undoubtedly play a critical role in making this possible. However, the community stands behind you! Through Every Hand Joined and Northfield Promise, there are literally dozens of community stakeholders and partners who are willing to step forward to help more local children learn to read. From Businesses to faith communities to the medical communities, partners are implementing additional strategies to help support early literacy in both Northfield and Red Wing. We know that it really does take a village!

We also know that resources help!

We’re committed to using the financial resources of the Accelerator Fund and the human power of our networks to be supportive of your teachers in this work.

What resources do you need to help move more kids to reading proficiency in your class?

We want your ideas!!! 

We don’t want to tell you the ideas…. Use your creativity and expertise to brainstorm and come up with research-based ideas. We can help with financial assistance or volunteers. Do you need help in the classroom? Do you need help with processes? Do you need help organizing?

As you run into barriers or find you need help or resources throughout the year, we hope you’ll think of us. Just ask! We are here to support you in this important work!


Complete this short form (it should take less than 5 minutes to complete!) We also promise you will hear quickly. This is not about red tape or bureaucracy – we want to make this as easy as possible to help get the resources needed to support more kids reaching reading proficiency!