kidsreading1WASHINGTON, D.C., April 13, 2015 – Eight states across the nation have been named 2014 Pacesetters by the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, cited for their efforts to begin to turn around a crisis in early reading achievement among low-income children and in so doing, to put those children on a path to school success. Reading at grade level by the end of third grade is a key predictor of high school graduation. More than 80 percent of low-income children miss that critical milestone. The 2014 Pacesetters include Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Iowa and Ohio. They were selected after a review determined each had taken effective action — in its own way — to push the Campaign toward its 2020 goal of increasing by at least 100 percent the number of low-income third graders reading at grade level in 12 states or more. All of the eight honorees are addressing one or more of three key challenges to early reading success: too many children starting kindergarten not ready for school; too many children missing too many days of school and too much instructional time, and too many children losing ground over the summer and returning to school in the fall further behind than when they left. All are engaging a wide range of people and organizations, including top policymakers, public and nonprofit agencies, state and local philanthropies, business and civic leaders and parent groups.