The Franklin Regional Elementary B.A.R.K. program, Bettering All Readers with K-9s, was established in the fall of 2014 and is designed to pair students with canine companions, who serve along with a volunteer as literacy mentors. Registered Therapy Dog Teams (a trained volunteer and his/her pet dog) come to school so that the dogs may lend a non-critical listening ear to students for the purposes of increasing a child’s comfort with reading aloud and ultimately increasing fluency and comprehension. Guided by our Title I/Reading support teachers, volunteer handlers will also engage with students during each visit and help to reinforce key literacy skills as tailored to the needs of individual students or groups. B.A.R.K. visits will take place during school hours, once a month, for approximately one hour. B.A.R.K is offered to students who participate in our Title I reading program at Newlonsburg Elementary and Heritage Elementary. B.A.R.K. also takes place at Sloan Elementary for those who receive Reading Support services.