The People

Excel by Eight

Educational equity is the priority of Excel by Eight (formerly the Arkansas Campaign for Grade-Level Reading: AR-GLR). Currently, 70 percent of Arkansas’s third graders are not reading on grade level, the majority of whom are from families striving to get out of poverty. While schools must be accountable for helping all children achieve, providing effective teaching for all children in every classroom every day, Excel by Eight recognizes that schools cannot succeed alone. We invest in Excel by Eight’s four impact areas to advance equity: parent and community engagement, school readiness, school attendance, and summer learning.


“Third grade marks the point where children shift from “learning to read” to 'reading to learn.' Children who aren’t reading proficiently by this point can fall behind since they may have trouble comprehending more complicated reading material for history, English, science, and even word problems in math.”

― Excel by Eight

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