Reading & Literacy

9 States Make Adjustments for Early Reading Laws

June 01, 2020 1 min read
BRIC ARCHIVE

As states consider what reading instruction has covered this spring, and what it will look like in the fall, some have hit pause on their 3rd grade reading laws. In regular school years, these laws prevent students from advancing to the next grade unless they can demonstrate reading proficiency. Many are tied to performance on state tests, which states have canceled in response to the pandemic.

Seventeen states and the District of Columbia require retaining students who do not meet these proficiency standards by the end of 3rd grade, though most allow for exemptions under certain conditions, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. The following states have announced changes to these policies for the 2019-20 school year, or issued new guidance:

See Also: Early Reading Instruction Takes a Hit During COVID-19

Arizona: Students do not need to meet the requirements of the 3rd grade reading law to be promoted.

District of Columbia: Students should not be retained unless “the family and school agree that it is in the student’s best interest.”

Florida: As state testing data will not be available this school year, schools “promotion decisions should be made in consultation with parents, teachers, and school leaders based on the students’ classroom performance and progress monitoring data.”

Georgia: The cancellation of state tests eliminates the requirement to use testing data in 3rd grade promotion decisions.

Michigan: The 3rd grade reading law is suspended by executive order.

Mississippi: The 3rd grade reading test has been canceled. “Current 3rd graders will be promoted to 4th grade for the 2020-21 school year if the student meets all other district requirements for promotion.”

North Carolina: The state education department recommends that students be promoted unless the retention process was already “well underway” before the shutdowns.

Ohio: The state legislature suspended the 3rd grade reading law for the 2019-20 school year.

South Carolina: State testing data is not available this year, so promotion decisions should be based on “a collection of data points that may include formative assessments, teacher-made assessments, quarter grades earned, and prior parent notification and input.”

—Sarah Schwartz

Related Tags:

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Equity & Diversity Webinar
Culturally Relevant Pedagogy to Advance Educational Equity
Schools are welcoming students back into buildings for full-time in-person instruction in a few short weeks and now is the perfect time to take a hard look at both our practices and systems to build
Content provided by PowerMyLearning
Classroom Technology Webinar Making Big Technology Decisions: Advice for District Leaders, Principals, and Teachers
Educators at all levels make decisions that can have a huge impact on students. That’s especially true when it comes to the use of technology, which was activated like never before to help students learn
Professional Development Webinar Expand Digital Learning by Expanding Teacher Training
This discussion will examine how things have changed and offer guidance on smart, cost-effective ways to expand digital learning efforts and train teachers to maximize the use of new technologies for learning.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Reading & Literacy Spotlight Spotlight on the Science of Reading 2021
In this Spotlight, review where the learning gaps are for those learning to read, determine if teachers are properly prepared and more.
Reading & Literacy Letter to the Editor The Politics of Reading Is Failing Students
The National Reading Panel's guidance—not instruction—is to blame for students' low reading assessment scores, says a reading tutor.
1 min read
Reading & Literacy Opinion The Pandemic Will Worsen Our Reading Problem. Another Outcome Is Possible
Early learning lays the foundation for literacy. Here’s how to get young students back on track after a disrupted school year.
Emily Freitag
4 min read
Illustration of teachers helping students climb books.
Jess Suttner for Education Week
Reading & Literacy Is the Bottom Falling Out for Readers Who Struggle the Most?
A growing proportion of 4th and 8th graders read at the lowest level on national tests. Experts are working to understand why.
5 min read