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President Bush’s $1 billion a year initiative to teach reading to low-income children has not helped improve their reading comprehension, according to a Department of Education report released on Thursday and reported in today's NY Times.
The program, known as Reading First drew on some of Mr. Bush’s educational experiences as Texas governor (?!), and at his insistence Congress included it in the federal No Child Left Behind legislation that passed by bipartisan majorities in 2001. It has been a subject of dispute almost ever since, however, with the Bush administration and some state officials characterizing the program as beneficial for young students, and Congressional Democrats and federal investigators criticizing conflict of interest among its top advisers.