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[Susan notes: Great line: Reading is comprehension and all else are accessories.]

Submitted to New York Times but not published

To the editor

As the dissenting member of the National Reading Panel, on whose report Reading

First is based, I am not surprised that the program has failed to show

improvement in student comprehension. The five components that the Panel

identified were too few and mechanistic, and their presentation implied that all

are of equal weight and that comprehension stands at the end of the line.

In visiting schools over the past five years, I have seen the sad

spectacle of lifeless teaching, shoddy materials, and shallow learning brought

into classrooms by Reading First.. What the Department of Education has never

understood--and the Reading Panel failed to make clear-- is that reading is

comprehension and all else are accessories.

Joanne Yatvin

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