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New Reading Initiative Targeted Towards High-Poverty School Districts

Governor Sam Brownback has proposed a new initiative to help school children read.

He wants to use $9 million in each of the next two years from federal assistance funds for low-income families.

Most of the money would come from the Department for Children and Families, which would tap funds from federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families program.

The program typically provides cash assistance to families in poverty.

A number of high-poverty urban and rural school districts would be targeted through after-school reading programs.

The program will be evaluated by the University of Kansas to determine effectiveness.

Criticism of the plan has already started.

Shannon Cotsoradis with the group Kansas Action for Children says her group wants to improve grade schoolers' reading skills, but they don't support the way the program is funded.