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Student Reading Practices Fall Behind National Goals, Study Finds

Student Reading Practices Fall Behind National Goals, Study Finds

A report has found that students are reading fewer nonfiction books than fiction, and are reading below their ability levels.

According to the report by Renaissance Learning, the report, "What Kids Are Reading and Why It Matters," when it comes to reading in school, "classrooms have a long way to go," said an article on

The report, the article said, "was compiled from anonymized and aggregated data on nearly 10 million U.S. students in first through 12th grades."

"The National Assessment of Educational Progress [NAEP] Reading Framework has called for an increasing shift to nonfiction reading over time, from 50 percent nonfiction in fourth grade to 55 percent in eighth grade to 70 percent in 12th grade," the article said. "In reality, the portion of nonfiction books students read varies from 20 percent to 31 percent for boys and 13 percent to 21 percent for girls."

The report, the article said, "noted that the data focuses only on books and doesn't encompass article reading that students may do. The company's latest edition of its software, AR 360, will permit tracking of nonfiction article reading done through sources such as National Public Radio and Associated Press and therefore is expected to offer a "fuller picture" of student reading in next year's report."

The latest survey also found that "beyond grade 5, few students read books within their text complexity grade bands."

"However, the report added, although students should be 'encouraged to read increasingly complex texts,' that shouldn't come at the expense of comprehension," said the article. "Better that the students be exposed to complex text, the report stated, 'during instructional periods where scaffolding, coaching and discussion are available.'"

Read the full story and comment below. 

Article by Kassondra Granata, Education World Contributor

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