By Dr. Melody Schopp
Department of Education
Importance of reading in every season
I’m very excited to share a little bit of information about a Summer Reading Challenge that is currently in the works.
Reading proficiency in the early grades is critical in ensuring that students leave the K-12 system ready for college and careers. It sets the foundation for all future learning. Summer learning loss, especially among our in gap group students, is one of the primary concerns for educators when it comes to early literacy, and many states are grappling over how to handle struggling readers
In South Dakota, we’ll be encouraging young people across the state to continue reading, at appropriate and challenging levels, over the summer months. Using their Lexile scores, and with the help of online resources, teachers and librarians will be able to help students identify books and other materials that are at an appropriate level of difficulty and aligned to their unique interests. The goal is that students will have an active list of books they can read over the summer.
I’m optimistic that this Summer Reading Challenge will be a step in the right direction toward achieving our first student outcome creating students that are college, career and life ready after high school.