Philadelphia Elementary School held a Literacy Night for third-grade students to help families understand the Literacy-Based Promotion Act, which the Mississippi Legislature passed during the 2013 legislative session. The Act places a greater emphasis on grade-level reading skills as students’ progress through grades K-3.
Dr. Lisa Hull, Superintendent of Education, stressed the importance of students reading on grade level by the end of third grade. Students who do not pass the 3rd-grade reading assessment will not be promoted to the 4th grade unless the child qualifies for a good cause exemption. “Throughout this semester, our 3rd-grade teachers and principals at the elementary school have communicated with parents to make them aware of the reading requirement while also providing standardized assessment results to inform parents where their child is performing on reading," stated Hull.
The purpose of the meeting was to offer an opportunity for students, teachers, and parents to communicate about academic progress, build a supportive partnership, and provide each parent with important information about their child and what can be done at home to increase reading skills.
"For this age group, it is very powerful to have parents actively engaged in supporting their child's education," PES Principal Melisha Hancock said. During the meeting, parents were provided information about the state reading assessment, including sample reading passages and test items, along with where parents can get resources to help their child. "Our goal is to have every child pass the reading assessment and develop a strong foundation in early literacy for a lifetime of success," said Hancock.
Parents also received information detailing their child's progress and strategies parents could use at home to improve their child's reading skills. Third-grade teachers Stacey Deweese, Hannah Watkins, and Jessica Kendrick were available to discuss individual children's progress with their parents.