Third grade reading proficiency: mission critical

The New York Times
A Summer of Extra Reading and Hope for Fourth Grade
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/05/us/a-summer-of-extra-reading-and-hope-for-fourth-grade.html

Research has shown us how reading proficiency by the end of third grade is crucial. For example, The Annie E. Casey Foundation shows how this benchmark is not only tied to continued academic success but also has socioeconomic implications. Motoko Rich's piece today focuses on how this issue has gained attention throughout the country and states are taking action. In certain cases, states have legislation that recommends or requires third graders be held back if they do not reach proficiency. Rich visits a NC district to show us what that looks like over the summer for students who might be kept back. She also shares expert opinions on both this approach and the need for helping students earlier. This call for supporting children’s learning earlier and earlier is getting louder - most recently with the American Academy of Pediatrics recommending reading aloud starting from birth. And today, here at Scholastic, we have stakeholders discussing early education during the PreSchool Nation Summit. It's a great thing to see this conversation continue and today's article is an interesting read. What do you think on the issue?