There is a famous (or infamous) reading program that my district adopted about 7 years ago, that is supposed to be the best for "urban" (ghetto) kids. It has its good and bad sides, just like any reading program. It doesn't give you much room for creativity, which bothers many people, but sadly, some teachers abuse room for creativity and use it to not teach, so it's a tough call. And it's true that before this particular reading program came into the district, we used a strange mishmash of materials. However, the company used our district to make a commercial basically for them, and it's fairly interesting... leans toward the propaganda-ish side. Some of what they're saying is very true, some is true in very specific situations, and some I don't know how anyone could believe.
For example, the statement someone made that "Two years ago, we were the highest performing urban district in the country." What? Seriously? Highest performing in something, maybe (highest rate of turnover for teachers??) but definitely not in reading/language arts. If anyone has proof that I'm wrong, I'd love to see it, but as of now, I remain extremely skeptical.
The other thing that was amusing/sad was that many clips showed students writing on little dry erase boards for phonics and spelling. Yes, those are excellent tools for teaching. No, the district/reading program doesn't provide them. I can pretty much guarantee you that those were paid for by the teacher. Probably the markers too. That depends on the school.
Anyway, here's the video.
Oh, and here are my two workplaces so far this week: I'm in Lousiana!