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News from the Alaska State Legislature, the Office of Senator Dunleavy
Share this on TwitterShare on FacebookFor Immediate Release: January 20, 2017

Bill Establishing Reading Task Force Introduced on Senate Floor

JUNEAU – A bi-partisan measure aimed at improving literacy among students in Alaska was introduced on the Senate floor today.

SB 27, sponsored by Sen. Mike Dunleavy (R-Wasilla), establishes a task force on reading proficiency and instruction.

“Despite past efforts to improve reading proficiency, many children are still falling through the cracks,” said Sen. Dunleavy. “This task force will bring experts together from around the state to analyze data and prepare a path forward to improve reading proficiency for all Alaskan students.”

The task force will be comprised of fifteen members, including legislators, the Commissioner of Education, and representatives from all levels of Alaska’s education system, with the goal of making recommendations regarding reading practices for students across the state.

“Reading is a fundamental building block for lifelong learning and we aren’t currently meeting our student’s needs,” said Rep. Harriet Drummond (D-Anchorage), sponsor of the companion bill in the House. “We must find better ways to serve all students in Alaska and I believe this is a necessary step to make that happen.”  

Approximately 47,000 students in Alaska did not meet state standards in 2015, and reading proficiency scores have been stagnant for more than a decade, according to data from the National Assessment of Education Progress.

For more information, contact Daniel McDonald in the Senate Majority Press office at (907) 465-4066.