About the Virtual Event


This 2-part event begins with a 60-minute roundtable discussion between a renowned educator, a superintendent, and a literacy specialist on how dedicated independent reading in conjunction with targeted instructional reading can have a positive effect on students’ learning outcome and social-emotional well-being. This will be followed by a 30-minute Q&A during in which you will be able to raise questions, share your experiences, and gather feedback from the panelists and your peers.


Keynote Presentation


Improve Student Success with Independent Reading: the Research, Case Studies & How to Get Started

As teachers and students return to classrooms, a challenge looms on the horizon: What can your schools do to help all students make significant gains in reading, while addressing their social and emotional needs?

Research indicates that daily independent reading of self-selected books provides the practice students need to boost reading skill, build vocabulary and background knowledge, broaden experiences with genres, and instill a love of reading and learning. That’s why culturally relevant classroom libraries provide access and equity to all students and are essential part of any curriculum from Pre-K to 12th grade.

Join Laura Robb, Kris Felicello, and Carol Celani as they discuss the research, share case studies, and make suggestions on how dedicated independent reading at school in conjunction with targeted instructional reading can result in significant gains for every student.



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Meet our Keynote Speakers

Carol Celani

Literary Specialist, Auburn, ME School District

Carol Celani

Carol Celani, a Literacy Coach in Auburn, Maine has been teaching for twenty-one years. Her career has included teaching grades first through fourth grade. She is also a Reading Recovery teacher and a Literacy Interventionist.  She was trained as a Literacy Coach from the University of Maine’s Training Center in Orono through the (MPCL) Maine Partnership in Comprehensive Literacy in 2017 and has been coaching for the last four years at a Pre-K-6 Elementary school.

Dr. Kris Felicello

Superintendent of Schools, North Rockland Central School District

Dr. Kris Felicello

Dr. Kris Felicello has been in the field of education for over 25 years as a Teacher, Coach, Athletic Director, Assistant Principal, Principal, Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources, Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services, and he is currently the Superintendent in the North Rockland Central School District in Rockland County, New York.  Kris obtained his Doctor of Education degree in Educational Leadership from St. John’s University in 2011.

Laura Robb

Author, Teacher, Literacy Expert, and International Speaker

Laura Robb

Author, teacher, coach, and international speaker, Laura Robb has completed more than 43 years of teaching in grades 4-8. Robb received the Richard W. Halle Award for outstanding middle level educator from NCTE as well as the Friends of Literacy Award from the Nassau Reading Council. Robb is a keynote and featured speaker at conferences and leads workshops all over the country and in Canada. She is a regular contributor to www.therobbreviewblog.com and on https://therobbreviewpodcast.podbean.com.

Travis Temple

Sales Director, PreK-12 Education, Penguin Random House Education

Travis Temple

After teaching for over a decade, Travis moved to publishing, helping establish W. W. Norton’s High School Group. Joining Penguin Random House in 2017, Travis’ current aim is to further develop PRH Education’s relationship with PreK-12 leaders.