The Orange Unified School District is casting a communitywide safety net to catch youngsters who fail to grasp the essentials of reading by the third grade.
Each of the district's 26 elementary schools has drafted a "literacy plan" to aid students who aren't reading at their appropriate grade levels.
The program, which will cost $180,000 to start, is receiving state funds allocated for serving "at-risk" students.
Schools intend to call upon volunteers, professionals and business people in the district to help tutor the children, according to Nancy Young, coordinator of elementary curriculum.
The program has several parts, chief among them identifying students who are not reading adequately by the third grade--considered by educators to be a crucial time for setting lifetime reading skills.