What does this new Oklahoma law mean? The law outlines the adults’ responsibilities in a student’s academic career, leading up to and including third grade, who endorse the student reading on a third grade level before entering the fourth grade. It also states that third graders who score UNSATISFACTORY in reading on the Oklahoma Core Curriculum Tests (OCCT) must be retained (NOT PROMOTED to the fourth grade) with the exception of students who fit one of the SIX GOOD CAUSE EXEMPTIONS (below).
Parent of students on an IEP may learn more about the Reading Sufficiency Act by reviewing the following publications from the Oklahoma State Deparment of Education. On their website is a PowerPoint, a pdf file, a brochure and other helpful materials. This new Oklahoma law is designed to intensify reading instruction and allows for intensive help so that reading deficiency is corrected in the early years of education. The link to their website is http://ok.gov/sde/reading-sufficiency-act, a location that has more information about the Reading Sufficiency Act.
The Oklahoma State Department of Education has published a brochure entitled., “Educator’s Pocket Reference Oklahoma’s Third Grade Graduation Law.” Parents will find a very good summary about RSA by reading the brochure.
To view the brochure, please click on one of the links below.
What are the the six good-cause exemptions?
SIX GOOD CAUSE EXEMPTIONS FROM THIRD-GRADE RETENTION
Some third graders who score Unsatisfactory on the OCCT reading may be exempted from the retention requirement and be promoted to fourth grade. This is called a good-cause exemption. Good-cause exemptions are only given to the following students:
1. Be identified as Limited-English Proficient (LEP)/English Language Learner (ELL) on a screening tool approved by the Oklahoma State Department of Education Office of Bilingual/Migrant Education and have a Language Instruction Educational Plan (LIEP) in place prior to the administration of the third grade criterion referenced test; and the student must have had less than two (2) years of instruction in an English Language Learner (ELL) program.
2. Students with disabilities who are assessed with alternate achievement standards (AA- AAS) under the Oklahoma School Testing Program (OSTP) with the Oklahoma Alternative Assessment Program (OAAP) qualify for the good cause exemption. The student must be identified as needing special education services prior to the administration of the third grade criterion referenced test; The student must have an Individualized Education Program (IEP) in place prior to the administration of the third grade criterion referenced test and the student’s IEP must direct that the student is to be assessed with alternate achievement standards through the Oklahoma Alternative Assessment Program (OAAP) based upon the OSDE Criteria Checklist for Assessing Students with Disabilities on State Assessments.
3. To promote a student using an alternative standardized reading assessment, the following criteria shall apply: The student must score an acceptable level of performance on an approved alternative standardized reading assessment. The following are approved alternative standardized reading assessments that may be used to justify a good cause promotion. The listed score constitutes an acceptable level of performance, and the student must score at or above the following percentiles:
- Stanford Achievement Test, Tenth Edition, (SAT 10)-45th Percentile
- Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS) Complete Battery Form A, C or E, Level 9, Reading Comprehension -45th Percentile
- Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS) Core Battery, Form A, C, or E, Level 9, Reading Comprehension – 45th Percentile
- TerraNova, Third Edition Complete Battery Level 13, Reading– 45th Percentile
Alternative standardized reading assessments may only be administered following the administration of the Reading portion of the Grade 3 third grade criterion-referenced test. The spring test form of the exam shall be administered. An approved alternative standardized reading assessment may be administered at any time prior to the start of the next academic year, if there are at least thirty calendar days between administrations and different test forms are administered.
4. To promote a student based on evidence from the Student Portfolio, the Student Portfolio shall include evidence demonstrating the student’s mastery of the Oklahoma state standards in reading equal to grade level performance on the Reading portion of third grade OCCT. Such evidence shall be documented through an organized collection of work representing the student’s mastery of such standards, including a demonstration of mastery of all of the following essential components of reading: Phonological Awareness, Phonics, Vocabulary, Automaticity/Fluency, Comprehension and Spelling/Writing. The student portfolio shall include clear evidence that the standards assessed by the Reading portion of the third grade OCCT have been met. Clear evidence must include multiple choice items and passages that are 50% literary text and 50% expository text that are between 200-600 words, with an average of 350 words. Such evidence could consist of: chapter or unit tests from the district’s adopted core reading curriculum that are aligned with the Oklahoma State Standards or Teacher-prepared assessments. Each standard and objective assessed by the Reading portion of the third grade OCCT must include a minimum of four work samples of mastery whereby the student attained a grade of 70% or above. Demonstrating mastery of each objective for each standard is required.
5. Students with disabilities who participate in the statewide criterion-referenced test and have an IEP may qualify for a good cause exemption. To qualify for this exemption, the student must meet the following criteria: The student must have been previously retained in kindergarten, first grade, second grade, or third grade. The student’s IEP must identify Reading as an area of education need for the student or identify some type of special education service in the area of Reading and reflect that the student has received intensive remediation for more than two years. Intensive remediation may include any type of program offering intensive reading instruction that is identified as appropriate by the IEP team.
6. Students who demonstrate a reading deficiency and have been previously retained may qualify for a good cause exemption. To qualify for this exemption, the student must meet the following criteria: The student must have been previously retained in kindergarten, first grade, second grade, or third grade for a total of two years and the student must have received intensive reading instruction for two or more years.