Why do we offer reading classroom coaching to 2nd grade? Why not 3rd, 4th, or 5th grades?

APIE’s 2nd grade Reading Classroom Coaching and Compañeros en Lectura programs are working to get students on grade level by 3rd grade. Leading education research supports the conclusion that a majority of students who cannot read by the 3rd grade have difficulty catching up academically (Double Jeopardy: How Third Grade Reading Skills and Poverty Influence High School Graduation, 2012).

Results of a longitudinal study of nearly 4,000 students find that those who do not read proficiently by third grade are four times more likely to leave school without a diploma than proficient readers.”

–Double Jeopardy

A study of 382 students from kindergarten to third grade by Canadian researchers showed that the gap between strong and struggling readers increases as children get older (Early Warning Confirmed, by the Annie E. Casey Foundation). Data points showed that readers who struggled at the beginning of the study fell further behind their peers, who were reading on grade level, as the study progressed.

In 2nd grade, kids should be transitioning from learning to read to reading to learn. By helping them achieve grade-level fluency and comprehension, APIE’s Reading Classroom Coaching and Compañeros en Lectura are increasing the likelihood that these students will continue to high school graduation.

According to Early Warning Confirmed, there is “a link between failure to read proficiently by the end of third grade, ongoing academic difficulties in school, failure to graduate from high school on time and chances of succeeding economically later in life.”

The ultimate goal of all of APIE’s programs is to provide Austin ISD students with the preparation they need to be successful through high school and beyond, including college and career. We hope that by starting early, in second grade, we can boost these kids’ chances of succeeding academically and therefore empower them to improve their economic futures.