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No Child Left Behind Summer Reading Achievers Pilot Program, Part 2

The goofy No Child Left Behind rendition of titles and authors in a recommended summer reading list are listed first. Corrections are in parenthesis. The Press Release below calls this initiative "unprecedented." I agree. Don't miss the elementary list.

Middle Grades

Little Women, Lopuisa May Alcott (Louisa)

Cross Section, Stephen Biesty (Although the author/illustrator has created a number of cross-section books, none has this title.)

Biography of a Young Girl, Anne Frank (Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl)

Hiroshima, Jon Hersey (John Hersey)

The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, Williams Longfellow (Henry Wadsworth Longfellow)

Wadsworth, Williams Longfellow (?)

Joyful Noise, Paul Fleichman (Fleischman)

Inner Chimes, Bobbi Goldstein (Bobbye S. Goldstein)

The Sun is On, Linda Michelle Barron (author's name in Amazon: Lindamichellebaron)

Swiftly Tilting Plante, Madeleine L'Engle (A Swiftly Tilting Planet)

The Giver, Gary Paulsen (doesn't exist: either The Giver by Lois Lowry or The River by Gary Paulsen)

Lyddie, Katherine Patterson (Paterson)

Westing Fame, Ellen Raskin (Westing Game)

Scopes Trial, Jim Murphy (according to Amazon, there is no such book by this author)

Great Grandfather's Dragon Tale, Jane Yolen (Jane has written a lot of books with "Dragon" in the title, but this one isn't on Amazon. There's The Pit Dragon Trilogy, Merlin and the Dragon, The Dragon's Boy, Here There Be Dragons, Tea with an Old Dragon, Dragon's Blood, Dragon Night and Other Lullabies, Dragon and Dreams. But no Great Grandfather.) (It's a novella in the collection Here There Be Dragons.)

Number of the Stars, Lois Lowry (Number the Stars )

Johnny Tremain, Elizabeth Forbes (Esther Forbes)

From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil, E. L. Konigsburg (From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler)

So Far from the Bamboo Grove, Yoko Kawashima Watkins (Yoko Kawashawa Watkins)

Histories of Immigrant Teens, Janet Bode (New Kids in Town: Oral Histories of Immigrant Teens)

Upstairs Room Journey Room Johanna Reiss (There are two titles: Upstairs Room and The Journey Back)

Moss Flower Jacques Brian (Mossflower by Brian Jacques)

Reflections on a Gift of Watermelon, Stephen Dunning (Reflections on a Gift of a Watermelon Pickle)


Paige Unveils "No Child Left Behind Summer Reading Achievers"

Pilot reading program encourages children to read during the summer months, increase their skills.

ATLANTA -- U.S. Secretary of Education Rod Paige today joined Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue, Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Beverly Hall, students, educators and other community partners to kick off the "No Child Left Behind Summer Reading Achievers" program for students in Atlanta Public Schools.

Paige made the announcement during a visit to the Inman Middle School in Atlanta.

The new program encourages school children in grades K-8 to read actively during the summer months and avoid the loss of reading skills that often occurs during summer vacation. If successful, the program will expand next year to schools nationwide.

"Reading is the one skill upon which all others depend, and making sure that every child in our schools learns to read is a mission of the President's and mine," Secretary Paige said. "Research tells us that children who don't read during the summer may lose a month or more of the reading progress they had made in school.

"I'm pleased to announce the launch of the No Child Left Behind Summer Reading Achievers program. We have joined forces with Atlanta Public Schools in a pilot program to make sure that when students show up for the first day of school, they will be ready to learn.

"We're asking Atlanta's students to read 10 books over the summer. That's just about one book a week. And today, we're helping the students at Inman Middle School get started by giving every student a copy of a great book."

Paige added that Atlanta was chosen as the pilot site because of the district's strong school leaders and gains in student achievement posted over the past several years.

Consistent with the No Child Left Behind Act's emphasis on closing the achievement gap for disadvantaged students, the Atlanta Public School system was chosen as the pilot site because the schools have posted gains over the past several years. These improvements include a significant increase in the percentage of fourth graders meeting or exceeding the standard in reading as measured by the Criterion Referenced Competency Test.

To participate in the program, students will be expected to read 10 age-appropriate books during the summer months. Students will be required to describe briefly the books they have read by completing a simple form. Students who participate will receive an embossed "No Child Left Behind Summer Reading Achiever" certificate signed by the Secretary Paige and Superintendent Hall.

Brochures and posters will be distributed to K-8 schools, libraries and partner organizations within the Atlanta Public School district to encourage students to participate in the program.

Paige also thanked contributing corporate and non-profit partners with a strong presence in the metro Atlanta region and a focus on reading and literacy skill development. Current partners include First Book, Target stores, Scholastic, Inc., Atlanta-Fulton County Library System, Boy Scouts of America, Communities in Schools of Atlanta, City of Atlanta Bureau of Parks and Recreation, Boys and Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta, Atlanta Metro Chamber of Commerce: Atlanta Partners for Education, Atlanta Council of PTAs and Parenting Coalition International. Other partners will be announced at a later date. Partner organizations will provide other incentives and forms of recognition.

To help determine the pilot's effectiveness and applicability, the following accountability measures have been incorporated:

Students are required to submit reading logs detailing the number of books read and what they have learned by the end of August 2003. Principals will certify that 70 percent of their students completed the program. Data from Atlanta Public Schools reading assessments will help to determine if the campaign helped mitigate the loss of K-8 reading skills that occurs over the summer and improve scores district-wide.

One of President Bush's first actions after taking office was making improved children's reading achievement a centerpiece of his education reform agenda. Studies show that when children fail to learn to read early in school, every aspect of school success is affected. By providing early diagnosis and help for reading difficulties, Reading First-supported programs will help improve student motivation and academic achievement.

The president designed Reading First around an extensive knowledge base of the essential skills children must have to learn to read. The program reflects the findings of a congressionally mandated, extensive review of scientifically based research on how students learn to read, which was completed by the National Reading Panel in 2000.

Reading First was passed into law by a bipartisan majority of Congress under the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 and centers on the following priorities: raising the caliber and quality of classroom instruction; basing instruction on scientifically proven methods; providing professional training for educators in reading instruction; and supplying substantial resources to support the unprecedented initiative.

— staff
U. S. Department of Education





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