Louisiana Lawmakers Want to Give $5,500 to Struggling Students
Reading is the cornerstone of education. If you can get a hold on it early in life, the rest of your experience in school will be a lot easier. If you struggle with it - it can hamper your ability to learn anything for the rest of your life. That's the reasoning behind a new push in the Louisiana legislature to help the parents of struggling kids to get the extra instruction to bridge that gap. If a bill that just passed in the Louisiana Senate becomes a law, that help could come in the form of a $5,500 payment directly to the family.
According to a report from Biz New Orleans, Senate Bill 203 would create an account that parents with kids who are having difficulty reading can use to pay for instruction outside of the school system. Parents of children who have verified reading skill level below their grade level in Kindergarten through the 3rd grade would potentially qualify for the program.
The bill is sponsored by Rep. Sharon Hewitt from Stonewall, who said that over half of second- and third-graders in Louisiana are not currently reading at grade level. Hewitt also noted that this program will feature a hearty testing component to gauge how well it was working. The fear is that by the time kids move to the 4th grade, the crucial window to get them on the right track will have passed.
The bill will now move on the the Louisiana House of Representatives for review and a vote. If passed into law, the funds will only be available to use on qualified education expenses that include: Tuition, fees, textbooks, instructional or tutoring services, curriculum, and technological devices.