National Reading Panel Erred; Letter Incorrect
Published in Education Week, May 9, 2012
To the Editor:
I was astounded to read Linda Diamond's revisionist view of the last decade in literacy research ("Common-Core Standards in Reading Not 'Flawed,' " March 28, 2012).
Ms. Diamond maintains that the National Reading Panel's conclusions supporting explicit and systematic instruction "in the reading-foundation skills" is "well supported by research." Either Ms. Diamond is not aware of the furious criticism that emerged after the panel's report was published or she is ignoring it.
In a series of books, papers (published in the most respected journals in our field), and letters published in Education Week, Elaine Garan, Gerald Coles, and I, among others, argued that the National Reading Panel erred in its analysis and reporting of studies, omitted studies, ignored major issues in the field, and violated basic principles in appraising experimental research.
Despite its claims of being "scientific," the National Reading Panel report was simply bad science. Ms. Diamond is free to disagree with our conclusions, but she is not free to ignore them.
University of Southern California