Parents weigh in on Alabama’s Literacy Act potential delay

Parents weigh in on Literacy Act
Parents weigh in on Literacy Act
Updated: May. 23, 2021 at 8:11 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - The Alabama Literacy Act, passed in 2019, calls for third graders who are not reading on grade level to repeat the third grade. This is supposed to go into effect during the 2021 to 2022 school year. However, Gov. Kay Ivey is reviewing a bill that would delay the act from going into full effect for another two years.

Claire Waldrop, President of the Academic Language Association Chapter for Alabama says this should still go into effect next year.

“We are delaying the inevitable. We are kicking the can down the road,” says Waldrop.

Those for the delay, say it is necessary and gives time for students and teachers to prepare, especially after COVID.

Parent, Shaun Murie says schools should put the resources into place, see if they work, and then Alabama’s Literacy Act should go into effect.

“We don’t know if this is going to work. To set that penalty, to have a rock-solid date when this is when we are going to start penalizing students just didn’t make sense to me,” says Murie.

In 2019, before the pandemic, only 53 percent of fourth-graders were reading at a 4th-grade level. The Literacy Act will set up intensive tutoring for those held back or falling behind. Waldrop says this is why it is critical to get more teachers trained on the science of reading, and she says there is proof it works.

Governor Ivey still has to sign this bill to delay the Literacy Act until the 2023-2024 school year. She has until May 27th to make this law.

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