SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) will soon be required to consult with stakeholders as it develops and adopts a comprehensive statewide literacy plan for students in K-12 schools, under a bill passed by state Rep. Rita Mayfield, D-Waukegan.
“We all know how important literacy is,” Mayfield said. “Sadly, we’ve all seen how literacy rates have faltered in recent years. That’s why it’s so important for the Board of Education to step in and implement decisive measures to get our kids back on track when it comes to reading ability.”
Mayfield, a longtime advocate for measures aimed at promoting literacy among Illinois students, served as the chief sponsor in the House for Senate Bill 2243. The bill requires ISBE to create and implement the statewide literacy plan between October 1, 2023 and January 31, 2024.
The bill lays out a number of requirements, including that the plan must consider core competencies both in general as well as for certain populations and that programs be developed to identify and assist students at-risk for failing to meet literacy standards for their grade level.
“Reading is the foundation of all learning and when kids struggle to read at grade level, they struggle to progress at grade level,” Mayfield said. “Implementing a statewide literacy plan will allow us to better identify and address the roadblocks that are holding too many children back.”