Third-grade reading legislation sent to conference committee

LANSING, Mich. (AP) – Michigan lawmakers have more work to do on literacy legislation that could lead to third-graders being held back if they lag behind in reading.

The House on Thursday rejected a version of the bill approved a day earlier by the Senate. That sets the stage for a House-Senate conference committee to try to hash out differences.

Legislators are at odds over issues such as to what extent students could still move to fourth grade under “good cause” exemptions granted by a district superintendent.

The measure, which drew bipartisan support in the Senate, would place early literacy coaches in schools to focus on children reading below grade level. A state-approved reading assessment would be given at least three times a year in kindergarten through third grade to screen and assess progress.

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