Mississippi is committed to improving literacy among all school children, particularly students in pre-kindergarten through the 3rd grade. Strong Readers = Strong Leaders incorporates Mississippi’s Literacy-Based Promotion Act requiring all 3rd graders to demonstrate they read well enough to be promoted to 4th grade. Parents, educators and community members are all encouraged to be involved in equipping students to be strong readers. Visit us often for the latest resources, activities and news about Mississippi’s literacy campaign. Starting in the 2018-19 school year, 3rd grade students must score at level 3 or higher on the reading portion of the Mississippi Academic Assessment Program (MAAP) English Language Arts test to qualify for promotion to 4th grade – a higher benchmark than in previous years.


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“Good reading skills are absolutely essential for every child’s success. Without the foundation of literacy, I would never have achieved the Miss Mississippi crown, competed in the Miss America pageant or had the courage to sing on ‘American Idol.’ I’m now a college student and involved in encouraging Mississippi’s children to develop strong reading skills because I care about their futures and want them to have every opportunity to become strong leaders.”

Jasmine Murray

Miss Mississippi 2014