Study: SCS deficient in third grade reading - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Study: SCS deficient in third grade reading

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Only 30 percent of third graders in Shelby County Schools read at their grade level. Some board members say changing that number should be their number one priority. Only 30 percent of third graders in Shelby County Schools read at their grade level. Some board members say changing that number should be their number one priority.
Parent Mary Abriam says reading is vital. Parent Mary Abriam says reading is vital.

(WMC-TV) - An alarming statistic revealed from the Shelby County School Board of Education shows less than a third of Shelby County third graders read proficiently.

Only 30 percent of third graders in Shelby County Schools read at their grade level. Some board members say changing that number should be their number one priority.

SCS board members discussed the latest reading proficiency levels for third graders Tuesday night.

"Shelby County Schools is incredibly deficient in third grade reading," said board member David Pickler. "Third-grade literacy is really a benchmark for so many incredible things."

Parent Mary Abriam says reading is vital.

"I believe reading is gonna help in every subject they have to learn in school," she said.

She says her house is full of books, but she is also a fan of incentive programs and giving children a reward for reading. She recognizes that some parents do not have the resources at home.

"Engaging people from the outside. Because a lot of times parents have a hard time getting their kids to do those things, because they had a hard time through school as well," said Abriam.

And that is part of Pickler's plan, he wants to work with local business and nonprofits to partner with schools and create more opportunities for teaching— in and out of school.

"In order to change that we have to change the way we do business. We have to redefine our objective. We have to redefine the way we budget. We have to redefine how we employ assets in our community and with our school system," said Pickler.

Pickler says now that the board has reached settlements with most of the suburban schools. They are going to start focusing the children, starting with literacy.

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