Bob Wise, President of the Alliance for Excellent Education, Issues Support Statement for Striving Readers Act
$200 Million Proposed—Thousands of Middle and High School Students Across the Nation Could Benefit from Bi-Partisan Federal Legislation Introduced Today
Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and former governor of West Virginia, has issued the following statement in support of the Striving Readers Act:
“The Striving Readers Act recognizes the urgency and the value of focusing funding to improve the reading and writing abilities of the nation’s secondary school students. Current federal policy only supports reading instruction through third grade, but we know that students must be improving their reading and comprehension skills in every grade in order to understand the more complex coursework at the high school level.
“With 71 percent of the nation’s 8th graders reading below grade level, too many students are entering high school without the skills to tackle more complex courses, and their frustration often leads to dropping out. The United States of America simply cannot afford to take these risks anymore. With 90 percent of our fastest growing jobs depending on a highly literate workforce, this proposed legislation would greatly assist our students to succeed in high school and graduate prepared for the challenges of postsecondary education and the 21st century workforce.
“Introduced by U.S. Senators Jeff Sessions (R-AL) and Patty Murray (D-WA), this legislation would expand the Striving Readers program, which began two years ago with support for eight programs. The proposed legislation would enable every state to receive vitally needed assistance to improve reading performance by helping to create statewide initiatives; train teachers to incorporate reading skills in every subject area; coach parents to support their children’s reading development; and implement many other effective, proven strategies.
“Because federal commitment to reading disappears after the 3rd grade, this legislation is essential for focusing attention on the older student so every one stays in school and crosses the commencement stage with a diploma in hand.”
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The Alliance for Excellent Education is a Washington-based policy, research, and advocacy organization that works to make every child a graduate, prepared for postsecondary education and success in life.
For more information about the Alliance for Excellent Education, please visit: www.all4ed.com.