The State Superintendent of Education Dr. Cade Brumley, says he is looking for ways to improve Louisiana's literacy rates by taking a direct approach. Staying in school for 30 additional hours during the summer. Right now Louisiana is 48th in the nation when it comes to education. Brumley believes 30 extra school hours will make a dramatic difference in improving literacy skills for children who are not reading at grade level.

Dr. Brumley has submitted a proposal to the Louisiana State Board of Elementary and Secondary board education asking them to consider mandatory summer school. The proposal is for 30 additional hours over the summer for elementary students who are not reading at their grade level by the end of the school year. Dr. Brumley said, "A child that's not reading on grade level by the end of third grade and certainly by the end of fourth grade is at a much greater risk to be a dropout."

Not all educators and parents agree with Dr.  Brumley, but in a recent conference on his proposal he said, "I'm not going to back down." The state super of Ed also thinks the hurricanes and the recent pandemic played a big part in the low literacy skills adding, "It was a year of starts and stops and interruptions. Virtual face to face, virtual starts and stops."

Taylor Shreve, a parent, and teacher at Lafayette Renaissance Charter High School said, Louisiana needs to go back to the basics and zero in on phonetics starting in Kindergarten. Shreve challenged, "Based on the articles it's going to be sitting in front of the computer with a teacher teaching from a script. Those kids will not retain longer than two weeks, it is not going to help them long term. It's not going to close the gap."

Nevertheless, It looks like the ball is already rolling and a decision on Dr. Brumley's proposal will be coming soon. The State Superintendent of Education will meet with Louisiana education leaders next week. If Dr. Cade Brumley's proposal is approved mandatory summer school will go into effect next summer in 2023.

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