The importance of literacy among young students was a focal point during Howell’s Board of Education Meeting last week.

Executive Director for Instructional Services, Elson Liu, spoke to the board about the literacy programs in the district. In 2015, a law was passed that focused a great deal on 3rd grade illiteracy. It is at this grade that student’s proficiency in English Language Arts begins to get examined through the use of the M-STEP Program.

In the upcoming years, the proficiency of literacy in third grade students will be scrutinized even more so than it already is. Students struggling with English Language Arts will be retained at a larger rate in hopes of allowing them to improve in their proficiency. Liu claims that by 2020, up to 30% of 3rd grade students could be retained due to illiteracy.

Right now there is a Three-Tier System implemented to assist students with their reading and writing skills. The three separate tiers represent the comprehension students have with a certain subject and the level of assistance they receive. Liu also claimed that more summer literacy programs are already being discussed to help keep students on the right track. (DF)