Pat, Personally

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Nevada Reading Week: An opportunity for all

This week Clark County School District students all across the valley are stepping up their reading as they celebrate Nevada Reading Week. To celebrate, members of the CCSD Board of Trustees, local on-air personalities, safety officers, elected representatives and other community members are volunteering their time to read to several of our elementary schools. In fact, I myself get to visit several of our schools and read to students.

However, we must remember that placing an emphasis in reading should be a goal all year long. According to the National Education Association, children who are read to at home are more likely to learn to read and even do better in math.

Here at CCSD, we have made reading proficiency a top priority. Our Read by Third Grade initiative is one of the six key initiatives in our Pledge of Achievement. Third-grade is a critical time when students transition from learning to read to reading to learn.  Meeting this goal is crucial in ensuring that students graduate on track and on time.

In order to ensure that our students learn to read by third-grade, we have created Zoom Schools which provide schools with a high English Language Learner student population with extended school days, hours, reading centers and provide more tailored learning plans.

These additional efforts and the extra time our amazing teachers spend with our students to help them be proficient in reading are more than worth it. According to a study by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, students who do not read proficiently by the third grade are four times more likely to drop out of school. It is no secret that an emphasis on early development produces great results in the long term.

We can all do more to help increase reading proficiency for our students. I encourage parents to make reading at home a part of the family routine, ask to volunteer to read at your child’s school or volunteer with our partners like Spread the Word Nevada who promote literacy and support many of our schools.

So this week make sure to pick up a book and join the rest of the state for Nevada Reading Week. Remember to follow CCSD on Twitter, @ClarkCountySch, and stay up-to-date on all the reading events taking place in our schools.