Nearly all teachers and principals believe students should have time for independent reading at school, yet only about a third of teachers set aside time each day for it, according to a recent survey by Scholastic.
A nationally representative sample of nearly 3,700 PreK-12 teachers, including several dozen school librarians, and more than 1,000 principals reported on student reading and access to books. More than 90 percent of them agreed that “students should have time during the school day to read a book of their choice independently.”
But just 36 percent of teachers said they were able to make time for such reading every day. Nearly a quarter of teachers say they never make time for it—though it’s important to note the question was asked of teachers for all subjects and grade levels.
When independent reading occurs, students spend an average of 22 minutes on the activity. Asked about the primary barrier to independent reading time, 9 out of 10 teachers cited “demands of the curriculum.”
A version of this article appeared in the May 10, 2017 edition of Education Week as Reading Instruction