Muscogee school board approves new reading program - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Muscogee school board approves new reading program

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COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -

Before the vote, school board member, Cathy Williams, described the $1.7 million price tag on the new reading wonders program as an investment in our future, rather than an expense.   She said the teachers she has spoken to so far really applaud the effort. 

On the table for discussion at Monday's school board meeting was a program called Reading Wonders by McGraw Hill.   The goal of this project is to unify the teaching material so that every school in the district takes the same approach toward their lesson plan that aligns with the new expectations and standards demanded by the state.   Superintendent David Lewis said it's very important to make sure the district is on the right track when it comes to reading because it is the foundation for all other learning.  

"Talking with teachers and principals and realizing the fundamental teaching, we're using materials that are outdated and currently are not aligned with the common core standards, nationally," said Lewis. 

"You have to have a program that is comprehensive enough that it will address all of those areas- in terms of literacy proficiency and mastery for student achievement, and this reading wonders program will do just that," said Terry Baker, Director of Elementary Education. 

Board member Patricia Green wanted to make it clear that the money they're voting on tonight was already part of this year's budget and they are not borrowing from future funding.

Other board members pointed out that the benefits of having a unified reading program are keeping the lesson plan the same for students who end up moving from one school to another before they graduate.   The plan also focuses on penetrating language barriers between teachers and students who were brought up speaking a different language.    

After a the discussion, the board voted to unanimously approve the program. 

It works on a six year plan and the district should be seeing measurable results within that time. 

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