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State Seal First Lady's Office
Press Release Date:  February 3, 2005
Contact:  Dottie Persinger


Senate Education Committee passes Senate Bill 19 to help struggling readers


Frankfort, KY:   The First Lady’s efforts to help struggling readers in Kentucky, Senate Bill 19, passed unanimously out of the Senate Education Committee today.


“I applaud the Senate’s dedication to the children of our Commonwealth. Senate Bill 19 is the next step to ensure that every Kentucky child who needs these services to learn how to read will receive them.” stated Mrs. Fletcher.


After personally endorsing the bill on Monday and testifying again today, Mrs. Fletcher stated that if educators can identify these struggling readers when they first enter school, they can intervene with proven, research-based strategies and put them on the road to lifelong learning.


The First Lady also stated, “There will always be struggling readers and this legislation promotes continuous long term wrap around services for our children.”


The “Read to Achieve Act of 2005”:

  • Provides for a comprehensive school wide reading program in each elementary school.
  • Provides diagnostic reading assessments and intervention services for struggling students in Kentucky’s elementary schools.
  • Ensures quality instruction by highly trained teachers.
  • Continues the “Collaborative Center for Literacy Development:  Early Childhood through Adulthood.”
  • Creates a reading diagnostic and intervention fund to provide renewable two-year grants to assist schools in helping struggling readers.
  • Creates the Reading Diagnostic and Intervention Grant Steering Committee.


Senate Bill 19 builds on legislation sponsored by Senator Kelly in 1998 which established grants to support teachers in the implementation of research-based reading models to help struggling readers.  To date, one-third of Kentucky’s elementary schools have used the program.


Promoting literacy programs remains one of the First Lady’s top priorities and passions.






***NOTE:  See attachment for testimony of the First Lady at the Senate Education Committee Meeting on Thursday, February 03, 2005.First Lady's Testimony - Senate Education Committee



Last updated: Thursday, February 03, 2005