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3rd grade slump? Maybe everything is bigger in Texas.
On the other side are supporters of a more traditional approach proposed by Donna Garner, a retired teacher and conservative education activist. Those board members say students need more spelling drills, phonics lessons and practice in grammar identification to learn to read and write properly. This side also favors developing suggested reading lists with a heavy emphasis on classical literature.
"They teach reading by getting them to read every third or fourth word," Garner said of current methods. "But the problem is when they start getting the harder (words) at about Grade 3, and they hit a wall."
I'll be keeping Texas in my prayers.
Dozens of passionate educators are expected to attend today's public hearing. Garner won't be among them; she says her presence is too polarizing. But that doesn't mean she isn't devoted to the cause.
"I've committed years to this cause, and I cannot believe that people can be so wrong about what kids need to learn," she said. "We've lost millions of Texas children in the last 10 years. We can't afford to lose millions more."