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[Susan notes: Yeah, Stephen! Why is this concept so difficult for people to grasp? To read better, children need access to books, so they can read more.]

Published in Denver Post

To the editor

Stagnant scores on CSAP reading test

Published in Denver Post, August 8

Re: "CSAP still stalled on reading," Aug. 3 news


According to your article, "Lucia Guzman, vice

president of the Denver Public Schools board, said the

district has been on a 'treasure hunt' for solutions

to low reading results." The treasure is easy to find:

It is the school library. Study after study shows that

when given access to interesting, comprehensible

reading material, young people will read. And studies

also consistently show that extensive reading leads to

high levels of reading ability, writing ability, a

large vocabulary and a firm control of grammar.

A major reason economically disadvantaged children do

poorly on reading tests is that they have little

access to books at home, in their communities, and

often at school. Very often, their only possible

source of reading material is the library. Improved

school and public libraries are the obvious first step

in improving reading.

Of all the solutions proposed, improving access to

good books is the least expensive, the most pleasant

for children, and the only one that has ever worked.

Stephen Krashen, Los Angeles

The writer is a professor emeritus at the University

of Southern California's Rossier School of Education.

Stephen Krashen

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