University of Rochester

Genesee Valley Writing Project's Summer Institute Kicks Off July 9

July 5, 2007

The Genesee Valley Writing Project, a newly established site of the National Writing Project, will host sixteen local teachers at its first-ever annual Summer Institute beginning Monday, July 9. The four-week invitational Summer Institute, the heart of the Genesee Valley Writing Project, will offer teachers a way to improve the quality of writing and literacy instruction in their classrooms to help students become better writers and learners in Monroe and surrounding counties.

The community of teachers, representing all grade levels from kindergarten to university and all subject areas, formed during the 2007 Summer Institute will create the foundation for the continuing work of the Genesee Valley Writing Project.

"We are very pleased with the caliber of outstanding local teachers selected to participate as Writing Project Fellows in this four-week intensive program," said Meg Callahan, director of the Genesee Valley Writing Project and assistant professor at the University of Rochester. "By providing a vibrant teacher-centered community, the Summer Institute will be an opportunity for renewal, inspiration, and personal learning that will lead to professional growth. It will provoke thinking, research, and inquiry and equip teachers to become leaders within their schools and communities."

The Summer Institute, which takes place July 9 through August 3, will feature collaborative writing groups, teacher demonstration workshops, reading research groups, and presentations that draw from local and national literacy expertise. Participating teachers will have the opportunity to study classroom strategies for teaching writing, read and discuss research, and improve their knowledge of writing by writing themselves.

Sponsored by and housed within the University of Rochester's Warner School of Education, the Genesee Valley Writing Project serves teachers and students from urban and suburban regions of Monroe and surrounding counties. The Genesee Valley Writing Project is a collaborative school-university partnership that is dedicated to improving the quality of student writing and learning in K-16 schools through teacher-centered professional development. All follow-up programs and activitiesócommunity outreach programs, school-based inservice workshops, collaborative programs, and teacher study groupsówill evolve from the centerpiece of the Summer Institute and will take place throughout the remainder of the year.

The National Writing Project, a federally funded professional development program with nearly 200 sites, provided over 7,000 programs for K-16 teachers across the country last year. The emphasis on writing, while not new to the writing project, is particularly timely because many school districts are putting literacy on the top of their agendas. The Genesee Valley Writing Project site is a vital step in advancing and supporting writing and literacy development throughout area schools.

For more information about the Genesee Valley Writing Project, visit, or contact Meg Callahan at (585) 273-5090 or by e-mail at

About the Warner School of Education
Founded in 1958, the University of Rochester's Warner School of Education offers master's and doctoral degree programs in teaching and curriculum, school leadership, higher education, counseling, human development, and educational policy. The Warner School of Education offers a new accelerated option for its Ed.D. programs that allows eligible students to earn a doctorate in education in as few as three years part time while holding a professional job in the same field. The Warner School of Education is recognized both regionally and nationally for its tradition of preparing practitioners and researchers to become leaders and agents of change in schools, universities, and community agencies; generating and disseminating research; and actively participating in education reform.