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Statement: Right to Read CT Coalition Expands

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DATE: May 25, 2021

CONTACT: Amy Dowell, Amy@edreformnow.org


Right to Read CT Coalition Expands


May 25, 2021 —Today, the Right to Read CT Coalition announced that it has expanded—with new organizations representing literacy experts, education advocates, and civil rights initiatives joining the cause. Together, the coalition is promoting a bill that seeks to establish an evidence-based, statewide strategy to address early literacy in every kindergarten through third grade classroom in Connecticut. H.B. 6620, An Act Concerning the Right to Read and Addressing Opportunity Gaps and Equity in Public Schools, has been championed by Senator Pat Billie Miller and House Majority Leader Jason Rojas, in collaboration with the Black and Puerto Rican Caucus. It has already passed out of both the Education Committee and the Appropriations Committee, and is expected to go to the full House floor soon.


The original Right to Read CT coalition was made up of the Connecticut Commission on Women, Children, Seniors, Equity & Opportunity (CWCSEO); Education Reform Now CT (ERN CT); HILL for Literacy; Literacy How; and Ready CT. The expanded coalition now also includes:

  • Haskins Global Literacy Hub;

  • Norwalk Acts;

  • Achievement First;

  • The Racial Equity Initiative;

  • The Connecticut Charter Schools Association;

  • Excel in Ed in Action;

  • The Southport CoLab; and

  • The Southport School.

As members of the coalition—Amy Dowell, State Director of ERN CT and Steven Hernández, Executive Director of the CWCSEO—made the following statement:


“We are so proud to be joined with these inspiring new partners, whose support today reaffirms the importance of this legislation and building students’ early literacy skills so that they can thrive. From grades K-3, students learn to read, so that later, they can read to learn. By now, there is a consensus among educational, psychological, and cognitive scientists about the correct way to teach these skills so that all children can be successful. As a matter of equity, and for the benefit of all Connecticut students, we need to ensure that educators are prepared to use these evidence-based practices in every K-3 classroom in every public school district. All Connecticut children deserve the right to read. Our coalition trusts Connecticut’s legislators to protect and expand that right.”

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About the Right to Read CT Coalition:

Connecticut students are facing unprecedented academic challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic, and inequity is on the rise for students most in need. However, all students have a right to read, and there’s a right way to teach them. The Right to Read CT coalition has been established to raise awareness and build support for this critical agenda. To learn more about this work and our partners please visit the website, https://www.righttoreadct.org.