KWIT

Iowa's Summer Reading Program is No Longer an Option

Apr 17, 2017

Iowa has plans to eliminate its third grade summer reading program.  Siouxland Public Media’s Mary Hartnett has more.

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Last Thursday, a state senate subcommittee announced plans to get rid of the reading program.  The unfunded mandate didn’t perform well in statewide trials. Lawmakers agreed to establish a summer program for third-graders who fail grade-level reading tests at the end of the school year.  They would be held back unless they took part in a summer reading program.  Democratic Sen. Joe Bolkcom of Iowa City said that the retention plan was as a "disaster" for young students, but he added that the state wasn’t doing enough to struggling students improve their reading skills.

Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds had been enthusiastic supporters of the summer reading initiative. For Siouxland Public Media, I’m Mary Hartnett.