Pioneer Valley Books has partnered with researchers and educators to measure the impact of our programs in the classroom. 




JEM & R study finds that students who received instruction from Stepping Together and Phonics Launch made significantly greater reading achievement gains and had a higher rate of growth in reading performance than their peers in the control group whose teachers used different reading instructional programs.

The study was conducted in one district in Ohio and uses district wide assessment data from the 2023–24 school year to determine the relationship between Stepping Together and Phonics Launch and student literacy performance in grades K–2. 

McREL Study Finds Literacy Footprints Meets Criteria for Tier 1 (Strong Evidence) under ESSA [PDF]

McREL researchers conducted a matched pair cluster randomized control trial to investigate LFP’s possible effects on student achievement.


Study Shows Students Using Literacy Footprints Performed Better on End-of-Year i-Ready Diagnostic Reading Assessments [PDF]

A matched pair cluster randomized control trial was conducted during the 2021–2022 school year with 3,071 students enrolled in 29 public elementary schools in the School District of Manatee County, a large, suburban school district in Florida.


McREL Study Find Positive Impact on English Language Arts Achievement Found with Students Using the Digital Reader [PDF]

To examine the impact of the Digital Reader on student learning, McREL conducted a quasi-experimental analysis comparing outcomes for students who used the Digital Reader and those who did not across 31 elementary schools.





The following studies are in progress during the 2023-2024 school year. We look forward to publishing initial results in the spring of 2024. 

In Progress: In Tandem Outcomes Study

Pioneer Valley Books has teamed up with JEM & R Research and Evaluation, an independent research and evaluation firm, to conduct the In Tandem Outcomes Study. In Tandem is a research-based, small-group program that focuses on improving students’ reading, writing, phonemic awareness, and phonics skills. The 2023–2024 study is taking place at Claxton Elementary School, a rural PreK–5 school in Claxton, Georgia, and will include 21 classrooms ranging from Kindergarten to 2nd grade. The primary goal of the study is to determine preliminary impacts (pre-post gains) and program usage patterns on students' academic outcomes. Claxton Elementary had a prior year enrollment of 884 students (PreK–5) and has a diverse student population: 37% African American, 31% White, and 27% Hispanic. Notably, 97% of students also face economic disadvantages and approximately 20% are classified as English Language Learners. This study is designed to meet ESSA Evidence-Based Tier 3 (Promising). 

In Progress: In Tandem Quasi-Experimental Study

A quasi-experimental study is being conducted within one large school district in Florida (26 elementary schools). This study is designed to meet ESSA Tier 3 level requirements and is addressing the following research questions: 

  • What is the effect of In Tandem on K-1 student literacy achievement? How does the performance of students who use the In Tandem differ from those that do not use In Tandem

  • How does In Tandem differentially affect subgroups of students? Specifically, how do changes in literacy performance achieved by specific subgroups of In Tandem students (ethnic minority students, English language learners, students in special education, and students eligible for free or reduced‑price meals) compare to changes achieved by subgroups of comparison group students?

In order to examine differences in performance changes, the district is sharing data (demographic and STAR assessment data) from all classrooms in the district. The comparison sample from schools within the district not using In Tandem is being determined via propensity score matching.