Following his co-sponsorship of House Resolution 256, State Representative Brad Stephens (R-Rosemont) is promoting Read with Your Child Week. Read with Your Child Week is designated from May 7th through May 13th, 2023. HR 256 was introduced on May 3rd and is currently in the House Elementary & Secondary Education: School Curriculum & Policies Committee.
HR 256 states that the ability to read is fundamental to someone’s success and their ability to take part in our democracy as a responsible citizen. It also cites 2022 data from the National Assessment of Education Progress that states one-third of Illinois children are reading below their basic grade level. Another cited study from the Annie E. Casey Foundation also found third graders who do not read proficiently are four times more likely to drop out of high school.
“A small habit can make a big difference in the life of a child, and Read with Your Child Week demonstrates and celebrates that,” said Rep. Stephens. “I look forward to future adoption of HR 256 to recognize this week in Illinois and promote the importance of reading with our children. Books are great to add to bedtime, before dinner, or other times of day to keep your child’s mind active and growing. Add reading with your child to your daily routine this week and year!”
According to the Literacy Project, books for kids contain 50% more words that children are not likely to encounter frequently, compared to regular conversation, TV, or radio. It also found the number of books in the home significantly correlates with higher reading scores for children, and children who are read to at least three times per week by a family member are almost twice as likely to score in the top 25% in reading in comparison to children who are read to less than 3 times per week.