The Education Trust–New York Statement on NY Gov. Kathy Hochul’s literacy proposal

Jan 3, 2024 | Press Release

Jeff Smink, interim executive director of The Education Trust–New York:

“The Education Trust—New York applauds Governor Kathy Hochul’s announcement of a proposed state investment in early literacy aligned with the science of reading. Learning to read is a civil and human right necessary for full participation in American society and reading proficiently by the end of third grade is one of the most important indicators of future student success. Yet less than half of New York third graders are proficient in reading, with significantly lower proficiency rates for students of color and students from low-income backgrounds.

The Governor’s proposal will help to ensure that districts across the state are providing evidence-based literacy instruction to all students, while also helping provide educators with the training and resources to implement these changes in the classroom. While this proposal is a major step forward, much work remains to be done. As our Call to Action report found, too many schools are using non-evidence-based literacy instructional resources, too many prospective teachers are not trained in the science of reading, and many more parents and caregivers need information and tools to support their child’s reading and language development.

As the next step in Ed Trust—New York’s work on early literacy, we will be launching a statewide campaign later this month to:

  • Continue raising awareness and urgency with state and local leaders about the literacy crisis facing New York children from birth to age 8.
  • Advocate for policy changes and instructional shifts that promote evidence-based literacy instruction in the classroom.
  • Support effective implementation of new policies and instructional shifts by amplifying promising practices, analyzing early literacy data, and providing continued advocacy for these changes at the state, school, and community levels.

We look forward to working with the Governor, Legislature, and school and community leaders to support this and other efforts that prioritize evidence-based literacy instruction and improved literacy outcomes for New York students.”