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September 13, 2004 Extra Credit
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September 13, 2004

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NCLB Summer Reading Achievers Program "Has Motivated … Children To Be Avid Readers"

The No Child Left Behind Summer Reading Achievers program encourages students in grades K-8 to read actively during the summer months and avoid the loss of reading skills that often occurs during summer vacation. Students participating in the program had to read 10 age-appropriate books during the summer months. Prizes and certificates are awarded to successful students, and special recognition will be given to schools with the highest percentages of participating students. The following are excerpts from a recent Portsmouth Herald article highlighting the success of the program in Portsmouth, NH.

"City schoolchildren who met a summer reading goal set by the No Child Left Behind Act for a handful of school districts nationwide got more than a congratulatory barbecue Wednesday night at Little Harbour School. They got a high five from a U.S. Department of Education official, who called them examples for the rest of the nation. Mike Petrilli, associate deputy undersecretary of education, told the students, who had read at least 10 books over the summer as part of the Summer Reading Achievers pilot program, that the department will try to spread their success by starting the program in other school districts."

"Portsmouth was chosen as one of 11 sites to pilot the $200,000 program, designed to encourage summer reading by donating age-appropriate books to elementary- and middle-school students. Awards are granted to students who meet the goal, and schools with the highest percentages of participating students receive additional recognition."

"Nearly 400 students in Portsmouth met the reading goal. Students from New Franklin, Little Harbour, Dondero Elementary School and Portsmouth Middle School read more than 5,000 books over the summer.

"‘I don’t think there’s any doubt that this program has motivated the children to be avid readers,’ said Constance Carmody, principal of New Franklin School. ‘I don’t have any reason to think that that motivation won’t continue. Many of them have learned that reading is a lifetime enjoyment.’

"Petrilli praised the business partners and community leaders who donated books and prizes to make the program possible. ‘If we’re going to reach these very ambitious goals of No Child Left Behind, it’s going to take all of us getting involved,’ said Petrilli, who specializes in grant programs for the department. ‘The community and business community can be really supportive partners as well.’"

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NCLB Extra Credit is a regular look at the No Child Left Behind Act, President Bush's landmark education reform initiative passed with bipartisan support in Congress.

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Last Modified: 08/13/2013