The Howard County (MD) school system is considering major changes to its middle school class schedule that include discontinuing reading as a stand-alone subject for most students, school officials said.
In addition, the school day might be reduced from eight instruction periods to seven 50-minute periods, with physical education classes held every other day.
In Howard County, reading would be a part of all middle-school subjects, and students who are performing below grade level would receive additional support that could include a stand-alone reading course, school officials said.
"I believe that in the 1990s, the decision was made for Howard County middle schools to have a separate reading class," Wise added. "That has served us very well in the past. But now, with the common core and the emphasis on college and career readiness, we want to move further to make sure that our students have the critical thinking skills and that they are able to read and comprehend and write like a historian or a scientist or a musician within those specific content fields."