April 23, 2014

Lawmaker: if Johnny can’t read in 3rd Grade, he should be held back

Nebraska could follow the lead of Iowa in requiring 3rd Grade students pass a standardized reading test to advance to 4th Grade.

At least, one state senator is pushing the idea.

Sen. Scott Lautenbaugh of Omaha has included that provision in his six-point plan to improve education in Nebraska. Lautenbaugh points out the idea is only in the proposal stage, but could well be introduced in the legislation session next year.

Lautenbaugh says he has consulted with education professionals about the proposal and has received a mixed reaction.

The biggest opposition, according to Lautenbaugh, centers on whether holding a child back in 3rd Grade could damage a student’s self-esteem. Lautenbaugh counters that if a child cannot read, he will not be able to read at the advanced grade level, which would be more damaging to his self-esteem. He says it will be something the Unicameral will have to weigh in considering the issue.