DENVER (CBS4) – Denver has been named a finalist for the PaceSetter Award for the city’s plan to address early literacy challenges that face the city’s low-income students.
The award is offered by the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading and Denver is one of 25 cities that are finalists. The awards will be presented at the Grade-Level Reading Community Network Conference in Denver on July 2.
“Early literacy is critical to the success of all of Denver’s children. It has a direct correlation to high school graduation rates and sets a foundation of successful learning for the rest of their lives,” Denver Mayor Michael Hancock said in a statement. “By focusing on this critical skill, we can dramatically change the course for thousands of Denver students and build a strong workforce for the future of our great city.”
Denver’s plan for improving early literacy makes it a charter member in a national movement of local leaders, states, nonprofits, and foundations putting a stake in the ground on third-grade reading.
According to the news release from Hancock’s office, third grade marks the point when children shift from learning to read and begin reading to learn.
“Students who have not mastered reading by then are more likely to get stuck in a cycle of academic failure, drop out of school, and struggle throughout their lives,” the release said.