Bill to pay kids to read gets initial OK in Senate

DENVER — A proposal to pay low-income children for each book they read is causing some controversy at the Capitol.

The bipartisan bill narrowly passed its first vote in the Senate today.

It was inspired by a study done by a Harvard economist in which children earned $2 for each book they read, with the average student earning $14.

Opponents on both sides of the aisle said the state shouldn’t bribe children and that it should be up to parents to decide whether to reward their children.

Democratic Sen. Chris Romer said the study found that the students paid to read were found to be three months ahead of other students in reading.

The bill would spend $1 million from the existing Read-To-Achieve program funded by tobacco settlement money.


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