As We Are...

We are in the first year of implementation of Michigan's new 3rd grade reading law, the law that has at its heart a desire to ensure that no child falls through the cracks–missing out on the necessary skill of reading proficiently.

Legislators in Lansing felt it was incumbent upon them to fix Michigan's terrible 3rd grade reading proficiency rate; currently, roughly half of third graders in the state of Michigan tested as proficient or advanced on the last M-STEP. Their bandaid method of choice was retention. In the first draft of the law, a mandate was put in place to retain any third grader who tested one year or more below grade level in reading. Thankfully, this version was revised to allow for multiple exceptions and to ensure that a child would not be held back for more than one year.

If you talk with proponents of this law, many will use a word we are using a lot in education lately: equity. They will state that we need to ensure that every child has every opportunity for success, and this law will ensure that no child slips betwe